A-Rob’s Woes Go Hollywood, the Curse of No. 12, Velus Lets It Hurt, Fields Lets it Rip, and Other Bears Bullets

The Chicago Bulls play preseason basketball tonight.

Perhaps this will help take our minds off the Bears…

… if only for a little bit.

  • Through four games with the Rams, Allen Robinson II has just 18 targets, 9 catches, 95 receiving yards, and only one touchdown to his name. This isn’t what Los Angeles was expecting when signing Robinson to Sean McVay’s offense. But it’s an awful lot like what we saw from Robinson in his final year in Chicago.
  • Then again, if you didn’t know any better, I wouldn’t blame you if you thought the Bears could use a guy like this who is clearly being under utilized had you blindly seen Robinson’s target share rate in L.A. and his career résumé (three years with 1,110+ receiving yards including back-to-back in 2019 and 2020). But that’s why blind résumés are tricky.
  • Last year, Robinson’s struggles were under-the-radar nationally because of where the Bears were sliding down the standings. And it was mostly brushed off as a product of the quarterbacks he was playing with or scheme he was playing in Chicago. Unfortunately, for Robinson, he being afforded those outs with the Rams. Everyone is noticing:
  • I can’t say I saw this free-fall coming. But I can’t say that there weren’t signs that were concerning. There is still time for him and the Rams to figure it out. But the early returns on L.A.’s investment aren’t all that great.
  • From the former No. 12 to the one currently wearing the number, did we realize that Velus Jones Jr. didn’t play a single snap on offense. No catches, no targets, no snaps with the offense whatsoever. I’m unsure if this is a result of being limited in practice for most of the last two weeks. Or if it is because Jones isn’t ready to take on special teams duties and offensive responsibilities. But that isn’t encouraging to see a big, fat 0 next to Jones’ name in the offensive snaps column. Maybe there is a curse on players wearing No. 12 on Chicago’s football team?
  • The Bears drafted Jones to be an impact performer in both special teams and as a receiver. Moreover, drafting Jones was the front office’s splash addition to the receivers room. If he isn’t getting reps in that capacity, that pick will seem wasteful. Ideally, that changes. And soon.
  • This is good energy from Velus in the wake of a crucial mistake:
  • “It’s really frustrating,” Jones said, via NBC Sports Chicago. “But I’m definitely going to let this one sit and hurt. It’s going to motivate me next time I’m out there. I know my abilities. I know the type of returner I am. So I’m going to let this one sit and hurt.”

  • Know what you did wrong. Learn from it. And vow to never do it again. Onward.
  • Also? I thought Daryl Johnston made an astute observation about the challenges of fielding a punt from a left-footed punter (a rarity in the NFL) in the merciless New Jersey winds. But allow me to pile on with additional notes. Because on top of all that, we’re talking about a rookie, making his NFL debut, who was limited in practice, fielding punts from a left-footed punter while battling those notorious N.J. winds. I wonder if the Bears accounted for this in their build-up into Week 4.
  • Headlines that say it all, say it well, and say it in brief: Bears QB Justin Fields’ poor play exacerbated by ancillary problems. (Sun-Times)
  • In that vein, Josh Schrock (NBCS Chicago) warns not to blame Fields for these offensive woes.
  • BearsWire’s Alyssa Barbieri highlights the best (and worst) grades PFF handed out to Bears players in Week 4. And to really drive home the point of the Bullet above, Chicago’s lowest-graded offensive player was center Sam Mustipher (who played all of the snaps) and Dante Pettis (who played the third-most snaps among receivers). It isn’t conducive to putting together a successful offense when the players getting the most reps aren’t performing all that well.
  • This one hurts to re-watch, Dante:
  • Some good news on the grading front? Right tackle Larry Borom (77.0) and receiver Darnell Mooney (74.4) were two of the Bears’ three highest-graded players. Unfortunately, Cody Whitehair – whose 83.3 grade was the best among Chicago’s offensive players – is “going to miss some time” with a knee injury. Gulp!
  • Perhaps the Bears will use this opportunity to let Teven Jenkins earn a full-time role at right guard. He is certainly playing well enough to do so:
  • I could watch this over-and-over again:
  • But Kevin Fishbain (The Athletic) points this out and it really hit home: “(T)he Bears would have only one other non-screen pas go for more than 20 yards. It was the most productive passing game of the year for Fields, and the 106th-most passing yards in an NFL game this season.”
  • Head Coach Matt Eberflus has hope for the future of the pass game, but there is a ton of work to do.
  • This is what it looks like when a team likes the Dolphins invests in playmakers around a developing quarterback vs. a team like the Bears that tries to piece together an offense with short-term bridge targets:
  • https://twitter.com/PFF/status/1577289936860069890?s=20&t=U6O0juQbrV4YJ4UisWovyQ

  • I still don’t understand why the Bears wouldn’t keep a backup kicker (how do you justify cutting the guy who scored all your points last week?) on the practice squad as an emergency option, but least Cairo Santos is back with the team:
  • Mind-blowing stat of the day:
  • Cubs fans 🤝 Brewers fans 🤝 White Sox fans 🤝 turning their full focus to football season:
  • Oh my! Sounds like it is time for us to bone up on some hockey prospects:
  • written by

    Luis C. Medina, who you can find on Twitter at lcm1986, has been covering the Chicago Bears at Bleacher Nation since 2017. Since then, he has written about 3 head coaches, 5 play-callers, and 11 starting quarterbacks. Previously, Luis wrote about the Cubs and MLB at BN (2015-16) and worked in the Chicago Tribune sports department (2011-16). He also co-hosted a Cubs postgame show, Outside the Ivy, in 2019.

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