After moving on from former second overall pick Mitch Trubisky, the Bears traded up in the draft to select Justin Fields. Fields has everything you want in a franchise QB. He's certainly the energy Chicago needs after some uninspiring offense the past few seasons.
With that being said, Fields should be lacing them up in week one, right Matt Nagy? Well, the Chicago head coach has other plans for the season opener against the Rams on Sunday Night Football.
Yes, Andy Dalton is expected to be the QB1 for the Chicago Bears. We'll get more into the QB situation, along with the rest of the team. Here's our team preview for the Chicago Bears.
The Bears defense doesn't strike fear as they did a few years ago when they made a playoff run. It's not a bad defense, but it's certainly not at that elite level anymore in my opinion.
The star of defense is Khalil Mack. Although he has failed to reach double-digit sacks the last two seasons, Mack is still one scary dude. I mean, imagine lining up against this guy.
I can already feel the pee dripping down my leg if this man came at me trying to knock my head off. Mack is still going to be one of the most impactful edge rushers in the league. It's going to be interesting what the Bears do with him at the end of the year. Their cap situation is a full-on mess right now, and there have already been rumors about teams calling the Bears regarding Mack. Something to keep an eye on.
One of my favorite young defensive players is Roquan Smith. He's all over the field and fits perfectly in what people want in a linebacker in today's game. Smith was named second-team All-Pro last year after recording 139 total tackles, along with two interceptions. I expect Smith to be one of the top linebackers in the league this season.
Eddie Jackson, Akiem Hicks, and Robert Quinn return to the defense as well. Quinn had a very disappointing season after signing a $70 million deal. The Bears definitely need more than two sacks out of Quinn this year. Safety Eddie Jackson leads a young secondary. After letting Kyle Fuller walk, it's going to be interesting to see how this secondary plays, especially at cornerback.
Every time I turn on the TV or listen to a podcast, the one topic they always talk about is Justin Fields vs. Andy Dalton. Before we dive into that, let's talk about the other weapons on offense.
They have pretty solid skill players. Allen Robinson continues to play well, despite not having a good QB ever throw to him in his career. Robinson will continue to be the most underrated WR1. Robinson's future in Chicago is uncertain, as he's playing under the franchise tag this season. Darnell Mooney will be on the other side of Robinson. Mooney showed flashes last season, and I think he's good enough to be a serviceable WR2.
David Montgomery showed he could handle the load of being a three-down back last season. Unfortunately for Montgomery fantasy owners, Tarik Cohen will be back this season. I expect a 1-2 punch out of the Bears backfield. Jimmy Graham is still somehow playing. I really like second-year tight end Cole Kmet. Don't be surprised to see Kmet as the Bears second option behind Robinson.
The offensive line situation is a mess. They are most likely going to be a bottom-five unit. That probably went into Matt Nagy's thought process when choosing his starting QB.
Speaking of QB. It seems like Andy Dalton will be the week one starter. I know that makes Bears fans outraged, and they should be. It doesn't make sense to me either.
Matt Nagy was part of the Chiefs when Andy Reid had Mahomes sit behind Alex Smith. He might be trying to replicate that here in Chicago. The problem is, Alex Smith was still playing at a high level at the time. Andy Dalton is a backup at best in the NFL. Justin Fields has looked really good in the preseason. He looks the part and certainly is way more dynamic than Dalton. The offensive line could be a factor in letting Fields play. For me, it's should always be about who gives you the best chance to win. After seeing what has happened during the preseason, it's hard to justify that Andy Dalton gives you a better chance to win than Justin Fields. It's going to be fascinating what Nagy does, especially because his seat is hot.
BEST VALUE FANTASY PLAYER
I like both Darnell Mooney and Cole Kmet. Someone needs to step up and take over the number two option role. They both showed flashes last season, which will hopefully translate into this season for a second-year jump.
TOTAL WIN PREDICTION
I expect Fields to take over eventually, but I can't see this team win over seven games with Andy Dalton as the starter. Some question marks need to be answered, especially at the offensive line. I expect them to be somewhere around the six to seven win mark.
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