With the regular season finished, two things become officially official: (1) where the Chicago Bears will pick in the NFL Draft, and (2) who the Bears will face in the 2022 season.
Having traded their first round pick as part of the move up to draft Justin Fields last year (it would’ve been 7th overall), the Bears will not pick until the second round at number 39 overall. As we’ve seen, the Bears will still be able to draft an impactful talent at that spot, but obviously it’s going to leave the new GM a challenge to a make a go of it in his first draft with the Bears. Not that I’m complaining about the Fields trade. I’m still a believer.
As for the teams the Bears will face in 2022, it’s a (theoretically) better schedule than they faced in recent years. At home, the Bears will get the following teams (2021 records):
On the road, the Bears will get:
As you can see, the Bears get the extra home game in 2022 (it just alternates year to year). In terms of strength of schedule, to the extent you can meaningfully evaluate it at this moment, it’s supposed to be softer:
— Larry Mayer (@LarryMayer) January 10, 2022
The full schedule of dates should be released by mid-May.
A fun way to visualize the schedules, if you didn’t see it in the Bears Bullets:
ALL NFL TEAMS' 2022 OPPONENTS
Each team plays against teams in the same row, in the same column, with the same color, or that have the same shape. pic.twitter.com/v3ue1Mhz2g
— Lee Sharpe (@LeeSharpeNFL) January 10, 2022