Twenty days until training camp starts for the Chicago Bears. Are you ready for it?
- Akiem Hicks isn’t pleased with his Madden NFL ’19 rating:
While u over thrrr blinkn fix my damn rating. How I went from 86 to 85, wit a better season. Yaw gone lose credibility pic.twitter.com/Bt1z2zNBTm
— akiem hicks (@The_Dream99) June 30, 2018
- Hicks has been the best and most reliable Bears player the last two seasons, but he isn’t even the team’s highest-ranked player in Madden. If you’ll recall, that distinction belongs to Adrian Amos.
- I think Hicks might be onto something here. After all, Pro Football Focus had him as the eighth-highest-graded interior defender against the run last season. It’s remarkable how effective he was as a defender last year, especially when you consider his 900 saps were the fourth most among players at his position. Productive, reliable, and durable? Yeah … give that man a boost on the Madden grading scale!
- Andrew Link of Windy City Gridiron dives into the ever-changing fronts thrown out by Vic Fangio, the Bears’ popular and creative defensive coordinator. Fangio has had to use a variety of different looks because of the different types of players the Bears have employed as they turned over the roster. The 2018 team has more continuity than any of Fangio’s previous Bears defenses, so we might see him tighten things up starting this season. Frankly, I’m curious to see how he and the defense attack some of the better offensive attacks on the schedule this season.
- On the other side of the ball, Allen Robinson figures to be a key cog in the Bears’ offense. So much so, Carlos Nazario of Fansided’s NFL Spin Zone believes the team’s offensive success will depend on how well Robinson performs. Robinson is the clear-cut WR1 the Bears didn’t have last season and he projects to carry a bulk of the load when it comes to the pass-catchers on offense. Despite the focus on changes at wide receiver and tight end, I’m a believer that the Bears’ success when they have the ball will come from a balanced attack that begins with Jordan Howard going in the backfield.
- In that vein, Jake Perper of Chicago Now’s Bears Backer sees 2018 as another breakout year for Howard. And why wouldn’t it be? Sure, things are set up for the passing offense to have a big year. But if the Bears are putting up points, you have to assume Howard will get his fair share of scores. Howard scored nine rushing touchdowns last season, which is impressive considering the Bears didn’t get into the red zone nearly as much as they needed to in order to show the appearance of having a competent offense.
- Jordan Howard highlights? You know you want them:
- Fell down a YouTube rabbit hole and found a clip of every Bears offensive touchdown last season … including the preseason:
- The 2017 preseason feels like it happened ages ago. It’s remarkable to think about how much has changed in less than a year’s time. Remember how Victor Cruz hauled in Mitch Trubisky’s first touchdown toss? Or Deonte Thompson’s ridiculous touchdown on a missed field goal? Or Mike Glennon torching the Titans’ first-team defense? I can’t wait to see what storylines this preseason has in store for us!