Can Matt Nagy Get Back to the Forefront of Offensive Innovation? And Other Bears Bullets

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Can Matt Nagy Get Back to the Forefront of Offensive Innovation? And Other Bears Bullets

Chicago Bears

I think I’ll have my leftover dinner for lunch, then make breakfast for dinner. Is that a little too outside-of-the-box? (Michael: Right now? Nah. Go for it. There are no rules.)

  • I don’t care that this play didn’t go for a huge chunk of yardage …

  • … but I do care about the innovative design, use of misdirection, and potential this play would have had if properly blocked and executed.
  • This is already a period in which NFL coaches and players have limited contact, but social distancing is really keeping everyone at arm’s length. Even still, I just know there’s a subset of coaches out there using this quarantine to draw up some innovative things for the 2020 season. I hope Matt Nagy is one of them.
  • I was diving through my DVR last night and realized I hadn’t deleted the Bears-Cowboys game from the 2019 season. That led me to give it a full re-watch. I’m bugged the Bears didn’t play with this crispness all season. If they would have been able to do so, I wonder how that would have changed the outlook of this offseason. Here’s hoping the team enters the 2020 campaign realizing that every snap and every game should be played with high tenacity and an uninterrupted focus. And while I’ll stop short of saying the Bears didn’t care or had their minds elsewhere/living off past accomplishments, there were far too many mental mistakes that put the team behind. When those moments stack up on drives, throughout games, and throughout stretches of the season, they tend to muck up an entire year’s worth of action.
  • For example, I found myself re-watching this particular play on repeat:

  • Nothing like yelling about a game that happened last December at 9 p.m. on a Sunday night.
  • Was this play call too gimmicky? Too cute? Did you roll your eyes at it when it happened? Yell at Matt Nagy through the TV? I’m pretty sure I did, too. But did you give it a re-watch? Someone missed a major blocking assignment on the edge, which allowed Robert Quinn (he’s a Bear now!) to tackle Cordarrelle Patterson for a loss without being touched at the line of scrimmage. Charles Leno Jr. took a chunk of blame on that play, but I’m not sure that was his assignment. Leno appears to be pulling out to block downfield. Meanwhile, wide receiver Anthony Miller, who is lined up next to Leno, appears to not fully commit to cracking back on Quinn, missing the assignment, and ultimately allows for the play to be busted before it could get going anywhere.
  • That small mistake didn’t cost the Bears the age. Heck. They still scored points on this drive. But it was enough of a set-back to get Nagy riled up on the sideline for someone blowing a blocking assignment.
  • Don’t you miss when Matt Nagy was lauded for his play design? I do. And with better blocking and execution, he could get back to this place:

  • The Bears are reportedly signing Barkevious Mingo, and not solely for his name. I had high hopes for Mingo coming out of LSU, but he was drafted by the Browns during an era when virtually all of the franchise’s first-round picks seemed cursed. That he’s found a role as a reserve in the years since leaving Cleveland is impressive and a testament to his skill and talent. Hopefully, he can keep those good times rolling in Chicago.
  • I remember seeing this and thinking to myself: “Barkevious Mingo, now that’s a name I’ve not heard in a long time …”

  • Do not underestimate the importance of the special teams aspect of this signing. The Bears who ranked first (DeAndre Houston-Carson), third (Kevin Pierre-Louis), and fifth (Nick Kwiatkoski) in special teams snaps last season have either left via free agency (Pierre-Louis, Kwiatkoski) or are still on the market (Houston-Carson). Sherrick McManis, who would have been there had he not suffered a season-ending injury after nine games, is also a free agent. Replacing special teams snaps with quality players is something good teams do to stay competitive.
  • For your listening pleasure:

  • A perspective on how things are going for the rest of the NFC North from the defending division champions:

  • Ah, jeez. I remember what it was like a year ago at this time watching other teams make moves while the Bears made minor tweaks. No, I won’t go as far as to suggest the Packers need to make sweeping moves to stay atop the NFC North. But there are certain risks that come with the status quo, and it’s something Bears fans know all too well. Even still … the Packers remain the team to beat in the division. Grumble.
  • I found myself down a YouTube rabbit hole and watching the Eagles’ Super Bowl win with a different perspective:

  • Twenty minutes of Super Bowl excellence should be helpful toward getting you through your day, so give yourself some time to re-live the magic.
  • NFL on FOX A-Team play-by-play voice Joe Buck is keeping it fresh by doing play-by-play calls of things that happen in life:

  • OK, so I’m more of a Vin Scully guy than a Joe Buck guy … but this is pretty cool. Who would you like to narrate your life? My top-5: Scully, Kevin Harlan, Marv Albert, Verne Lundquist, Mike Emrick.
  • I don’t care that this is Brian Hoyer’s third tour of duty with the Patriots. He’ll always be a Bear to me:

  • An old friend agrees to a restructured contract:

Author: Luis Medina

Luis Medina is a Writer at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at@lcm1986.