Eight catches. Seventy-four receiving yards. Two touchdowns.
Guess who didn’t start Alshon Jeffery on his fantasy team this week?
- Fantasy football aside, the biggest takeaway from Thursday’s Eagles-Giants game is how rough the Giants looked. New York dropped to 1-5 overall, 0-3 at home, and 0-5 against conference foes. Their minus-45 point differential is the second worst in the NFC and third worst in the entire league. It’s another slow start for the Giants, this time under new Head Coach Pat Shurmur and I’m not sure where the in-season improvement will come from in the weeks and months ahead. And I suppose that’s a good thing, since the Bears travel to MetLife Stadium to play the Giants in 51 days. Here’s hoping they don’t figure it out between now and then.
- At least they have Saquon Barkley going for them:
Saquon Barkley is on pace for:
-1168 rushing yards…5.2 yards per carry
-107 receptions…995 yards
-Total yards from scrimmage…2163…..this would have led the NFL last season…Todd Gurley had 2093
— Paul Pabst (@PaulPabst) October 12, 2018
- It’s almost as if you can see why we were interested in the Bears drafting him had he fell to them with the No. 8 pick.
- Let’s shift our focus from the bottom of the NFC East to what’s happening in the AFC East. Because in what is quite the scheduling quirk, each of the Bears’ next four opponents are AFC East foes. Trippy. Andrew Dannehy of Da Bears Blog believes the next four games as crucial for Mitch Trubisky’s future. The only game the Bears don’t figure to be favored in will be next week’s tilt against the Patriots, but this is a stretch of games where the Bears can really make some hay. And for Trubisky, it’s a platform for him to show whether the Tampa Bay game was truly a springboard that pushed him toward a better future.
- In that same vein, Greg Gabriel of 670 The Score writes that the next four paths will help set the course for what the 2018 Bears season could be.
- To be clear, it’s not going to be a walk in the park – even for the teams we figure the Bears have the best chance of beating. The Jets, Patriots and Dolphins defenses rank in the top-10 in opponent passer rating, while the Bills join the Patriots and Jets in ranking in the top half of the league in average yards per attempt. There are real challenges ahead, but the Bears need to go 3-1 if they want to continue to be taken seriously as contenders in the NFC. It’s doable, but it won’t be a cake walk.
- Let the record show the Bears defense is no slouch either, especially if Roquan Smith continues to pick up what his coaches and teammates are putting down. Head Coach Matt Nagy had nothing but good things to say about Smith’s playmaking ability as he has grown since joining the team after his holdout (Patrick Finley, Sun-Times), while Fellow inside linebacker Danny Trevathan said Smith brings “some sting” to the defense with his hard-hitting abilities (Chris Emma, 670 The Score).
- And check out the big brain on Roquan:
Bears LB Roquan Smith on how his speed helps him hit hard: "Force equals mass times acceleration."
— Mark Grote (@markgrotesports) October 11, 2018
- That’s the kind of answer you’d expect from someone who believes it’s all about preparation. And by the way, Smith is clearly an intelligent kid, and he always seems to know exactly what to say. Listen to him talk about his game and how he improves upon himself every week. It’s good advice for any player:
- Smith isn’t the first person to say “If you’re not getting better, you’re getting worse,” but I love that he has that queued up in his mind. Great mentality to have.
- ESPN 1000 in Chicago is celebrating its 20th anniversary as a radio station, which is impressive if you’re old enough to appreciate it. Long before the days when everyone had a podcast or an outlet to share their thoughts, sports radio was the main place to go to listen and discuss the topics of the day. And mind you, sports radio stations weren’t always successful. So congratulations to ESPN for making it this long. And a special congrats to Marc Silverman, the pride of SIU Carbondale (which happens to be my alma mater, too), who is profiled in a couple of pieces I think you should read today:
"I still remember it: ‘All right, let’s go to Skokie, land of Barnum & Bagel. Let’s pick it up with Marc. Marc, your dime, your dance floor.’" How a young sports radio dork became a successful sports radio dork, the @waddleandsilvy story: https://t.co/s4kM5Fg41k
— jon greenberg (@jon_greenberg) October 12, 2018
— Jeff Agrest (@jeffreya22) October 11, 2018