As the Super Bowl determines it’s champion on Sunday night and the 2017 NFL season officially comes to a close, the countdown to the 2018 Chicago Bears season begins and Bears fans will start to wonder what’s ahead for their team next year. According to Bears running back Jordan Howard, big things are in store for the team in 2018. On Thursday, while in Minnesota for the Super Bowl festivities, Howard was quoted saying “We’re definitely going to win the North, we have the talent to compete with anybody.” Howard is certainly making a bold statement but here are three reasons Bears fans could find themselves cheering for the top team in the division at year’s end.
1) Two for Tru– Bears QB Mitchell Trubisky finished up his rookie campaign in 2017 where he started twelve games under center and showed promise running the offense and taking care of the ball. Trubisky will look to have a second year leap similar to the previous year’s top two picks, Los Angeles Rams QB Jared Goff and Philadelphia Eagles QB Carson Wentz, both of whom had MVP caliber seasons in their sophomore year. It’s been reported that Trubisky and Goff will become roommates and train together in the offseason, so Bears fans can be hopeful that some of that second year magic rubs off on Trubisky in his second season in charge.
2) Nagy in charge– This off-season, the Bears hired a new head coach in Kansas City Chiefs offensive coordinator, Matt Nagy. Nagy is expected to bring diversity and innovation to a Bears offense that was as predictable as any in the league a year ago. Howard was also quoted on Thursday saying , “Last year we were pretty much basic. Everybody knew what we were going to do, (and) they knew what was coming like pretty much every play so it was pretty easy for them to stop us.” A season ago we became too accustomed to seeing run, run, and predictable third and long throw to start nearly every series. The Packers, Vikings and Lions will now have to adjust to Nagy calling the shots in Chicago while many on the Bears roster can give first hand insight into their division opponents and their tendencies.
3) Help is on the way– Whether it’s via draft or free agency, help should be on the way. The wide receiver position clearly lacked the most depth and playmaking ability in 2017 and adding a veteran target like Jarvis Landry or Sammy Watkins in free agency, Steelers Martavis Bryant via trade or using the first round pick on Alabama star Calvin Ridley, the Bears offense becomes better instantly with one of these moves. Bringing in depth at defensive back and adding a high end pass rusher to a defense that finished in the top ten in most categories, fans can see the Bears become a team on the rise and make a Jacksonville Jaguar like leap and go from worst to first in the division. It’s up to Ryan Pace to make the most of his fourth year on the job and if he moves his chess pieces to the correct spot in 2018, Bears fans will be singing his praises and feel confident in their team moving forward.