Chicago Bears – Last Word on Pro FootballKhalil Mack Brings Pressure, Mitch Trubisky Feels ItNFL Week One OverreactionsWith Khalil Mack Trade the Chicago Bears Are Now All-InKhalil Mack Traded to Chicago BearsNFL 2018 Strength of Schedule – Beyond the Win-Loss Recordhttps://lastwordonprofootball.com Sun, 16 Sep 2018 00:10:11 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.9.8 https://lastwordonprofootball.com/2018/09/15/khalil-mack-brings-pressure-mitch-trubisky-feels-it/ https://lastwordonprofootball.com/2018/09/15/khalil-mack-brings-pressure-mitch-trubisky-feels-it/#respond Sat, 15 Sep 2018 12:27:04 +0000

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When the Chicago Bears traded for Khalil Mack, the Bears were letting everyone know that they were “all in” to compete, at the very least, for the NFC North title.  The Bears hierarchy and fandom dreamed of the amount of pressure Mack would bring to opposing quarterbacks. That dream became a reality when Aaron Rodgers was crumpled beneath a pile of Bears defenders last weekend.  But as you now know, Rodgers returned, Willis Reed style, to come back and haunt the Bears 24-23.  Now the pressure has shifted to second-year quarterback Mitch Trubisky, and the offense’s failure to put the Green Bay Packers away.

That the offense “failed” is probably too strong a word.  But there was the fandom calling the Bears postgame show on @670TheScore, according to postgame radio host Hub Arkush on Twitter.  Saying that three out of every four calls were, “Trubisky’s a bust, get rid of him!” or “That bum Trubisky is killing us, they should play Chase Daniels!”

Sometimes being a sports fan in Chicago is like attending a bachelor party.  Some people you know, but there are the “others”, people you have seen before but don’t really know.    Watching them get disgustingly drunk, acting horribly, saying inappropriate things, isn’t really that much fun.

Makes a normal person want to take a shower and brush their teeth.  Makes athletes like Mitchell Trubisky want to quit social media altogether like he did during training camp.  From the time he was drafted Bears fans have held the belief that Trubisky was going to prove to be the franchise quarterback they have long been waiting for.  Fans have been rabid in anticipation of this season with many talking playoffs and super bowl on fan message boards.  They are a fickle bunch.  Texting each other “can you believe this”, when the Bears got off to that great start against the Packers.

A Good Start

The first drive for Trubisky against the Packers had worked out so well because it was scripted, planned and rehearsed for weeks.  Starting with a nod to the “T” formation of old, head coach Matt Nagy threw a variety of looks at the Packers.  You could tell on the first two drives a wider variety of play calls kept the Packers on guard playing slow and tentative. Chicago jumped out to a 10-0 lead in the first quarter and the defense, already playing well, started to tighten the screws on Rodgers and the Packers offense.

Khalil Mack and the Bears defense took over in the second quarter.  First, they knocked Rodgers out of the game, when Roy Robertson-Harris, Khalil Mack and Leonard Floyd had a meeting at the quarterback.  Robertson-Harris landed on top of Rodgers, which pinched his knee in a sideways downward dog yoga position.  Rodgers was clearly hurt and left the game, while his team punted.

On the Packers next drive, backup quarterback Deshone Kizer entered the game as Rodgers was carted off the field.  Kizer drove the Packers to the Bears 10-yard line before Khalil Mack intervened.  He sacked and stripped the ball from Kizer all at once.  Mack even recovered the ball on the remarkably athletic play.

After a short drive by the Bears, they punted, giving the ball back to Kizer and the Packers.  A couple completions and a penalty later the Packers were looking at 3rd down and 19 yards for a first down.  Desperate to put points on the board before halftime, Kizer dropped back to pass, as Bears defensive end Roy Robertson-Harris came up the gut on a stunt.  Robertson-Harris got into the face of Kizer, who tossed the ball into Khalil Mack’s belly, and Mack ran 27 yards for the pick-6 touchdown.  The Bears went to halftime with a 17-0 lead as boos rained down on the Packers at Lambeau Field.  Packer fans are fickle too.

Halftime

Once the teams took the field after halftime, Trubisky led the Bears on a good drive that took up nearly six minutes.  They used screen passes with pretty good success to get into the red zone.  But the Packers covered a third-down play pretty well and Trubisky threw the ball away so the Bears could kick the field goal that made it 20-0.

Before the Bears could really feel good about their lead, Aaron Rodgers put his helmet on and trotted onto the field.  It only took a two-step drop out of a shotgun formation, and a quick 10-yard completion to Randall Cobb to make Bears fans feel a little nervous.

The Packers went no huddle for pretty much the rest of the game and Bears defenders Khalil Mack and Akiem Hicks‘ conditioning was no match for the suddenly energetic Packers.  After the first pass play, the Packers went away from Hicks and Mack’s side of the field.  When Hicks and Mack left the game to get a breather as the Packers crossed the Bears 40-yard line.  Rodgers went back to the right side for completions against a suddenly tired pass rush.  Two incompletions in the end zone resulted in the Packers settling for a field goal, but momentum had already shifted.

Bad Finish

After that, the Bears went three and out.  Not because of Nagy’s play calls, or Trubisky’s lack of execution.  But because running back Tarik Cohen took a screen pass on first down and turned it back up the middle for a loss of a yard.  If he had gone up the sideline he would’ve gained at least five yards.  The Bears may have been able to turn second and five into a first down, but 11 yards to go is more difficult.  Cohen led the league in negative yards last year and needs to learn to take what he is given.

On a critical third down and 14 yards to go at the start of the Packers next drive.  Bears nose tackle Eddie Goldman wasn’t in the game.  Akiem Hicks moved over with Mack playing left end, and Sam Acho in Mack’s linebacking spot.  Fangio decided to have Mack run around Hicks in a stunt back up the middle, which took to long to develop.  Mack didn’t get close to Rodgers as he completed a strike to Geronimo Allison for 15 yards.

As with the previous drive, Hicks and Mack left the game to get rest after the Packers crossed midfield.  Rodgers wasted no time under no pressure as he completed a perfect 39-yard touchdown to Allison. Kyle Fuller had the play well covered, the pass was perfect.  20-17 Bears.

Packers Defense Comes Alive

What has been lost in post-game analysis is how disciplined the Packers defense played the final three quarters.  Packers defenders stayed in their lanes on a critical third down and a yard to go for the Bears.  Ha Ha Clinton Dix stopped Bears tight end Dion Sims for a loss on a misdirection tight end naked screen.  Trubisky executed what was called, the Packers just stopped him often enough to give Rodgers a chance to win.

The Bears tried to put the game away on their next drive.  Trubisky executed a critical third down and seven yards with a rollout and completion to rookie Anthony Miller.  Two big Jordan Howard runs and the Bears were looking at third down and two yards to go at the Packers 12-yard line.  Nagy dialed up a play to go for the touchdown which was well covered.  The only receiver Trubisky could throw to was Miller.  The ball went through his hands for an incompletion was well covered and would’ve lost yards anyway.   The Bears kicked the field goal to take a 23-17 lead.

With every drive the Packers had in the second half, Rodgers appeared less and less mobile.  On the first play of the Packers next drive, Rodgers threw the ball right into the arms of Bears cornerback Kyle Fuller, who dropped it.  The next play Khalil Mack finally got a hand on Rodgers and shoved him as he released the ball for an incompletion.  Rodgers hopped back to the huddle looking pretty wobbly.  On third down and ten yards to go, Rodgers found Randall Cobb breaking over the middle.  Caught in stride, Cobb ran to the endzone for a 75-yard touchdown that completed the seemingly impossible comeback.

The Bears still had a chance though.  With 2:08 left in the game and two timeouts left, Trubisky led a drive where they converted a fourth and ten on a roughing the passer penalty.  He did manage to complete one good pass to get them near midfield.  But on third and ten, and fourth and ten, Nagy called plays that were too aggressive with the amount of time that was left.  Both went incomplete downfield and the Packers ran out the clock for the win.

A Hint of Pressure

Right when the trade happened, the media and beat reporters were in a frenzy to get quotes and report on the Bears player reactions.  Trubisky was specifically asked by a slew of reporters if he felt any additional pressure to win with the acquisition of Mack.  He, of course, said no, but the seed had just been planted.

No one is so robotic they can block something out completely.  Even Tom Brady gets mad at reporters, lashes out, channels his anger, and turns reporter hyperbole into self-motivating fuel that he can use to crush souls on Sunday’s.

So far Mitchell has been more “Nuke” LaLoosh than anything.  He clearly has a “Crash” Davis in his corner, coaching him to say the right things, to be polite, respectful and earnest.  Bears players say he has shown the leadership and earned the respect of the locker room.  Actions speak louder than words though.

Creating the Wrong Kind of Pressure

Frequently on the Bears last few drives, the “happy feet” that Trubisky said postgame he needs to correct was on display.  Nerves are a powerful thing.  Until a person learns what to do and gains the confidence that comes with repetition and success, the nerves will always rise to the surface in a pressure-filled situation.  Maybe Mitchell should’ve played more in the preseason, or at least in two-minute drills and no huddle situations.  Bears nation and beat reporters who applauded Nagy’s thinking for cutting short first-team reps in preseason games, can thank Nagy for Mitchell’s “happy feet.”

Football is a game of action and reaction.  In training camp practices you can’t create the type of pressure necessary to sharpen a quarterbacks reaction, while he wears a red jersey that says DON’T TOUCH!  Outside of stripping off the red jersey, the only way you can create real pressure is to convince them that their job is on the line.  When the Bears moved up to draft Trubisky, and anointed him the starter with no competition, they dulled his reactions by taking the pressure off.  Now the only time he’s physically under pressure will be on Sunday’s running for his life.  Trubisky’s “happy feet” is the result of internal pressure he feels to succeed.

One of the phrases I’ve heard continually out of Bears camp was that “iron sharpens iron.”  They’ve been referring to the Bears top ten defense being effective at making the offense improve in practice.  Iron doesn’t get sharper without putting the necessary pressure on the iron.  In the Bears case, Matt Nagy’s practice’s don’t make perfect, even if you have 2000 reps like he says Trubisky has had.

Assigning Blame

The reason the Bears lost isn’t that Trubisky couldn’t get another first down with a completed pass, or missed a wide-open Trey Burton in the endzone on a play designed for Tarik Cohen.  It’s not the play calling, but you’re getting closer.  Even though Nagy admitted he called too many screens in the third and fourth quarters leading to consecutive three and outs.  You want someone to blame?  Take your pic

Fangio

I give you defensive coordinator Vic Fangio.  The minute that a hobbled Aaron Rodgers stepped back onto the field, Fangio should’ve dialed up every blitz that he had in his playbook.  Yes you could give up a big play that leads to a score, but they did score, didn’t they?  Fangio should’ve attacked before the no-huddle offense sapped the strength of the Bears pass rush on Rodgers first drive back. Without the field goal to make it 20-3, the Packers don’t win and run out of time.

He got outcoached by Packers head coach Mike McCarthy and Aaron Rodgers pure and simple.  He let the Bears blow another fourth-quarter lead like last year when he wanted John Fox’s job.  The Bears scored enough points to win, even though the defense and Khalil Mack got one of the scores.

Nagy

Don’t blame the screen passes for the loss.  Blame Cohen for turning a gain into a loss though.  It puts his quarterback and coach into tougher positions to convert third downs, which was the Bears achilles heel last year.

Blame Nagy for being too impatient and trying to be as aggressive as his coaching counterpart, Doug Peterson, the Philadelphia Eagles head coach.  Both Nagy and Peterson come from the Andy Reid coaching tree.  Peterson parlayed his aggressiveness into a super bowl after a couple of seasons.

Nagy should not rush things and let Trubisky walk before he runs.  He needs to put his quarterback into more manageable situations in down and distance.  He should have given him more game time in the preseason as well.

Kyle Fuller–Dropped an interception that hit him right in the numbers.

Eddie Jackson–Can’t let receivers run past you.  Last line of defense.

Cody Whitehair–Bad snap at a critical moment.  Trubisky forced to eat ball and Bears kicked field goal after wasting that down.

Illegally downfield penalty that called back 15 yard completion on final drive was a killer mental mistake.

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When the Chicago Bears traded for Khalil Mack, the Bears were letting everyone know that they were “all in” to compete, at the very least, for the NFC North title.  The Bears hierarchy and fandom dreamed of the amount of pressure Mack would bring to opposing quarterbacks. That dream became a reality when Aaron Rodgers was crumpled beneath a pile of Bears defenders last weekend.  But as you now know, Rodgers returned, Willis Reed style, to come back and haunt the Bears 24-23.  Now the pressure has shifted to second-year quarterback Mitch Trubisky, and the offense’s failure to put the Green Bay Packers away.

That the offense “failed” is probably too strong a word.  But there was the fandom calling the Bears postgame show on @670TheScore, according to postgame radio host Hub Arkush on Twitter.  Saying that three out of every four calls were, “Trubisky’s a bust, get rid of him!” or “That bum Trubisky is killing us, they should play Chase Daniels!”

Sometimes being a sports fan in Chicago is like attending a bachelor party.  Some people you know, but there are the “others”, people you have seen before but don’t really know.    Watching them get disgustingly drunk, acting horribly, saying inappropriate things, isn’t really that much fun.

Makes a normal person want to take a shower and brush their teeth.  Makes athletes like Mitchell Trubisky want to quit social media altogether like he did during training camp.  From the time he was drafted Bears fans have held the belief that Trubisky was going to prove to be the franchise quarterback they have long been waiting for.  Fans have been rabid in anticipation of this season with many talking playoffs and super bowl on fan message boards.  They are a fickle bunch.  Texting each other “can you believe this”, when the Bears got off to that great start against the Packers.

A Good Start

The first drive for Trubisky against the Packers had worked out so well because it was scripted, planned and rehearsed for weeks.  Starting with a nod to the “T” formation of old, head coach Matt Nagy threw a variety of looks at the Packers.  You could tell on the first two drives a wider variety of play calls kept the Packers on guard playing slow and tentative. Chicago jumped out to a 10-0 lead in the first quarter and the defense, already playing well, started to tighten the screws on Rodgers and the Packers offense.

Khalil Mack and the Bears defense took over in the second quarter.  First, they knocked Rodgers out of the game, when Roy Robertson-Harris, Khalil Mack and Leonard Floyd had a meeting at the quarterback.  Robertson-Harris landed on top of Rodgers, which pinched his knee in a sideways downward dog yoga position.  Rodgers was clearly hurt and left the game, while his team punted.

On the Packers next drive, backup quarterback Deshone Kizer entered the game as Rodgers was carted off the field.  Kizer drove the Packers to the Bears 10-yard line before Khalil Mack intervened.  He sacked and stripped the ball from Kizer all at once.  Mack even recovered the ball on the remarkably athletic play.

After a short drive by the Bears, they punted, giving the ball back to Kizer and the Packers.  A couple completions and a penalty later the Packers were looking at 3rd down and 19 yards for a first down.  Desperate to put points on the board before halftime, Kizer dropped back to pass, as Bears defensive end Roy Robertson-Harris came up the gut on a stunt.  Robertson-Harris got into the face of Kizer, who tossed the ball into Khalil Mack’s belly, and Mack ran 27 yards for the pick-6 touchdown.  The Bears went to halftime with a 17-0 lead as boos rained down on the Packers at Lambeau Field.  Packer fans are fickle too.

Halftime

Once the teams took the field after halftime, Trubisky led the Bears on a good drive that took up nearly six minutes.  They used screen passes with pretty good success to get into the red zone.  But the Packers covered a third-down play pretty well and Trubisky threw the ball away so the Bears could kick the field goal that made it 20-0.

Before the Bears could really feel good about their lead, Aaron Rodgers put his helmet on and trotted onto the field.  It only took a two-step drop out of a shotgun formation, and a quick 10-yard completion to Randall Cobb to make Bears fans feel a little nervous.

The Packers went no huddle for pretty much the rest of the game and Bears defenders Khalil Mack and Akiem Hicks‘ conditioning was no match for the suddenly energetic Packers.  After the first pass play, the Packers went away from Hicks and Mack’s side of the field.  When Hicks and Mack left the game to get a breather as the Packers crossed the Bears 40-yard line.  Rodgers went back to the right side for completions against a suddenly tired pass rush.  Two incompletions in the end zone resulted in the Packers settling for a field goal, but momentum had already shifted.

Bad Finish

After that, the Bears went three and out.  Not because of Nagy’s play calls, or Trubisky’s lack of execution.  But because running back Tarik Cohen took a screen pass on first down and turned it back up the middle for a loss of a yard.  If he had gone up the sideline he would’ve gained at least five yards.  The Bears may have been able to turn second and five into a first down, but 11 yards to go is more difficult.  Cohen led the league in negative yards last year and needs to learn to take what he is given.

On a critical third down and 14 yards to go at the start of the Packers next drive.  Bears nose tackle Eddie Goldman wasn’t in the game.  Akiem Hicks moved over with Mack playing left end, and Sam Acho in Mack’s linebacking spot.  Fangio decided to have Mack run around Hicks in a stunt back up the middle, which took to long to develop.  Mack didn’t get close to Rodgers as he completed a strike to Geronimo Allison for 15 yards.

As with the previous drive, Hicks and Mack left the game to get rest after the Packers crossed midfield.  Rodgers wasted no time under no pressure as he completed a perfect 39-yard touchdown to Allison. Kyle Fuller had the play well covered, the pass was perfect.  20-17 Bears.

Packers Defense Comes Alive

What has been lost in post-game analysis is how disciplined the Packers defense played the final three quarters.  Packers defenders stayed in their lanes on a critical third down and a yard to go for the Bears.  Ha Ha Clinton Dix stopped Bears tight end Dion Sims for a loss on a misdirection tight end naked screen.  Trubisky executed what was called, the Packers just stopped him often enough to give Rodgers a chance to win.

The Bears tried to put the game away on their next drive.  Trubisky executed a critical third down and seven yards with a rollout and completion to rookie Anthony Miller.  Two big Jordan Howard runs and the Bears were looking at third down and two yards to go at the Packers 12-yard line.  Nagy dialed up a play to go for the touchdown which was well covered.  The only receiver Trubisky could throw to was Miller.  The ball went through his hands for an incompletion was well covered and would’ve lost yards anyway.   The Bears kicked the field goal to take a 23-17 lead.

With every drive the Packers had in the second half, Rodgers appeared less and less mobile.  On the first play of the Packers next drive, Rodgers threw the ball right into the arms of Bears cornerback Kyle Fuller, who dropped it.  The next play Khalil Mack finally got a hand on Rodgers and shoved him as he released the ball for an incompletion.  Rodgers hopped back to the huddle looking pretty wobbly.  On third down and ten yards to go, Rodgers found Randall Cobb breaking over the middle.  Caught in stride, Cobb ran to the endzone for a 75-yard touchdown that completed the seemingly impossible comeback.

The Bears still had a chance though.  With 2:08 left in the game and two timeouts left, Trubisky led a drive where they converted a fourth and ten on a roughing the passer penalty.  He did manage to complete one good pass to get them near midfield.  But on third and ten, and fourth and ten, Nagy called plays that were too aggressive with the amount of time that was left.  Both went incomplete downfield and the Packers ran out the clock for the win.

A Hint of Pressure

Right when the trade happened, the media and beat reporters were in a frenzy to get quotes and report on the Bears player reactions.  Trubisky was specifically asked by a slew of reporters if he felt any additional pressure to win with the acquisition of Mack.  He, of course, said no, but the seed had just been planted.

No one is so robotic they can block something out completely.  Even Tom Brady gets mad at reporters, lashes out, channels his anger, and turns reporter hyperbole into self-motivating fuel that he can use to crush souls on Sunday’s.

So far Mitchell has been more “Nuke” LaLoosh than anything.  He clearly has a “Crash” Davis in his corner, coaching him to say the right things, to be polite, respectful and earnest.  Bears players say he has shown the leadership and earned the respect of the locker room.  Actions speak louder than words though.

Creating the Wrong Kind of Pressure

Frequently on the Bears last few drives, the “happy feet” that Trubisky said postgame he needs to correct was on display.  Nerves are a powerful thing.  Until a person learns what to do and gains the confidence that comes with repetition and success, the nerves will always rise to the surface in a pressure-filled situation.  Maybe Mitchell should’ve played more in the preseason, or at least in two-minute drills and no huddle situations.  Bears nation and beat reporters who applauded Nagy’s thinking for cutting short first-team reps in preseason games, can thank Nagy for Mitchell’s “happy feet.”

Football is a game of action and reaction.  In training camp practices you can’t create the type of pressure necessary to sharpen a quarterbacks reaction, while he wears a red jersey that says DON’T TOUCH!  Outside of stripping off the red jersey, the only way you can create real pressure is to convince them that their job is on the line.  When the Bears moved up to draft Trubisky, and anointed him the starter with no competition, they dulled his reactions by taking the pressure off.  Now the only time he’s physically under pressure will be on Sunday’s running for his life.  Trubisky’s “happy feet” is the result of internal pressure he feels to succeed.

One of the phrases I’ve heard continually out of Bears camp was that “iron sharpens iron.”  They’ve been referring to the Bears top ten defense being effective at making the offense improve in practice.  Iron doesn’t get sharper without putting the necessary pressure on the iron.  In the Bears case, Matt Nagy’s practice’s don’t make perfect, even if you have 2000 reps like he says Trubisky has had.

Assigning Blame

The reason the Bears lost isn’t that Trubisky couldn’t get another first down with a completed pass, or missed a wide-open Trey Burton in the endzone on a play designed for Tarik Cohen.  It’s not the play calling, but you’re getting closer.  Even though Nagy admitted he called too many screens in the third and fourth quarters leading to consecutive three and outs.  You want someone to blame?  Take your pic

Fangio

I give you defensive coordinator Vic Fangio.  The minute that a hobbled Aaron Rodgers stepped back onto the field, Fangio should’ve dialed up every blitz that he had in his playbook.  Yes you could give up a big play that leads to a score, but they did score, didn’t they?  Fangio should’ve attacked before the no-huddle offense sapped the strength of the Bears pass rush on Rodgers first drive back. Without the field goal to make it 20-3, the Packers don’t win and run out of time.

He got outcoached by Packers head coach Mike McCarthy and Aaron Rodgers pure and simple.  He let the Bears blow another fourth-quarter lead like last year when he wanted John Fox’s job.  The Bears scored enough points to win, even though the defense and Khalil Mack got one of the scores.

Nagy

Don’t blame the screen passes for the loss.  Blame Cohen for turning a gain into a loss though.  It puts his quarterback and coach into tougher positions to convert third downs, which was the Bears achilles heel last year.

Blame Nagy for being too impatient and trying to be as aggressive as his coaching counterpart, Doug Peterson, the Philadelphia Eagles head coach.  Both Nagy and Peterson come from the Andy Reid coaching tree.  Peterson parlayed his aggressiveness into a super bowl after a couple of seasons.

Nagy should not rush things and let Trubisky walk before he runs.  He needs to put his quarterback into more manageable situations in down and distance.  He should have given him more game time in the preseason as well.

Kyle Fuller–Dropped an interception that hit him right in the numbers.

Eddie Jackson–Can’t let receivers run past you.  Last line of defense.

Cody Whitehair–Bad snap at a critical moment.  Trubisky forced to eat ball and Bears kicked field goal after wasting that down.

Illegally downfield penalty that called back 15 yard completion on final drive was a killer mental mistake.

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NFL Week One OverreactionsEach Monday I will be putting together some overreactions from the weekend’s slate of NFL games. They might be reasonable, with stats and numbers to back them up. They also could be completely from the hip. All of them will have reasoning behind them. Either way, we are going to spend each Monday bringing you a couple of hot takes based on that particular week’s games. Here are overreactions from NFL Week One.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers Are Better Without Jameis Winston

Heading into Week One, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers were the biggest underdogs of the week at -9.5. That didn’t stop the best quarterback on their roster from putting on a show. Ryan Fitzpatrick went off on Sunday. He threw for 417 yards, four touchdowns and ran for another 36 yards with a touchdown on the ground as well. The New Orleans Saints were fifth in passing defensive DVOA last year. Fitzpatrick didn’t care, and showed he should be the starter all year for the Bucs. With all of the questions surrounding Jameis, the Bucs should keep him on the bench. Our week one overreaction here is Fitzpatrick provides the best path to a playoff berth for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

The Kansas City Chiefs lit up the scoreboard against the Los Angeles Chargers. In his first NFL start, Patrick Mahomes threw for 256 yards and four touchdowns. Pairing a quarterback who embraces the deep ball under the tutelage of Andy Reid is a formula for success. This is exactly where Mahomes finds himself, and it looks to be at the helm of the best offense in football. Kansas City finished fourth in offensive DVOA in 2017 with Alex Smith. Mahomes is going to increase that for the hiefs, and will lead them to the playoffs. Not only that, our week one overreaction is that he will play good enough to be considered an MVP candidate.

All off-season, the assumption was that Le’Veon Bell was going to sign his tender and play Week One. That didn’t happen and the Steelers are better off for it. The team doesn’t need his negativity and one is greater than the rest attitude. Already there is friction in the locker room whenever he is brought up. This is why the team can make do without him. James Conner had himself a monstrous game, finishing with 135 yards on the ground, and 57 more receiving. He is just the player the Steelers need, with the week one overreaction being the team can rely on Conner.

In the Sunday night game against the Green Bay Packers, Khalil Mack did something that hasn’t happened since 1982. That was the last time someone had a sack, forced fumble, fumble recovery, interception, and a touchdown in the same half. If you thought maybe this was the first time Mack had done it in a game, you’d be wrong. Not only that, but the last player to do it in an NFL game was in fact, Khalil Mack.

The Chicago Bears didn’t give up that much to get a Hall of Fame worthy player. Assigning the 15th pick to the Bears, and the 16th to the Raiders provides some interesting insights. Looking at Rich Hill’s draft chart, the Bears sent out the equivalent of around 409 draft points. This comes out to about the eighth pick in the draft. It’s nowhere near enough for what Mack is worth. The week one overreaction here is that regardless of what Oakland does, they’ve already lost the trade.

Last Word

As the year goes on, we will provide overreactions to each week of football. Some of them are going to be outlandish, while others will be based on facts and statistics. Only time will tell how many of them will end up looking good, and which are incorrect. For now, these were our Week One overreactions. See you in the Super Bowl, Patrick Mahomes.

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NFL Week One OverreactionsEach Monday I will be putting together some overreactions from the weekend’s slate of NFL games. They might be reasonable, with stats and numbers to back them up. They also could be completely from the hip. All of them will have reasoning behind them. Either way, we are going to spend each Monday bringing you a couple of hot takes based on that particular week’s games. Here are overreactions from NFL Week One.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers Are Better Without Jameis Winston

Heading into Week One, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers were the biggest underdogs of the week at -9.5. That didn’t stop the best quarterback on their roster from putting on a show. Ryan Fitzpatrick went off on Sunday. He threw for 417 yards, four touchdowns and ran for another 36 yards with a touchdown on the ground as well. The New Orleans Saints were fifth in passing defensive DVOA last year. Fitzpatrick didn’t care, and showed he should be the starter all year for the Bucs. With all of the questions surrounding Jameis, the Bucs should keep him on the bench. Our week one overreaction here is Fitzpatrick provides the best path to a playoff berth for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

The Kansas City Chiefs lit up the scoreboard against the Los Angeles Chargers. In his first NFL start, Patrick Mahomes threw for 256 yards and four touchdowns. Pairing a quarterback who embraces the deep ball under the tutelage of Andy Reid is a formula for success. This is exactly where Mahomes finds himself, and it looks to be at the helm of the best offense in football. Kansas City finished fourth in offensive DVOA in 2017 with Alex Smith. Mahomes is going to increase that for the hiefs, and will lead them to the playoffs. Not only that, our week one overreaction is that he will play good enough to be considered an MVP candidate.

All off-season, the assumption was that Le’Veon Bell was going to sign his tender and play Week One. That didn’t happen and the Steelers are better off for it. The team doesn’t need his negativity and one is greater than the rest attitude. Already there is friction in the locker room whenever he is brought up. This is why the team can make do without him. James Conner had himself a monstrous game, finishing with 135 yards on the ground, and 57 more receiving. He is just the player the Steelers need, with the week one overreaction being the team can rely on Conner.

In the Sunday night game against the Green Bay Packers, Khalil Mack did something that hasn’t happened since 1982. That was the last time someone had a sack, forced fumble, fumble recovery, interception, and a touchdown in the same half. If you thought maybe this was the first time Mack had done it in a game, you’d be wrong. Not only that, but the last player to do it in an NFL game was in fact, Khalil Mack.

The Chicago Bears didn’t give up that much to get a Hall of Fame worthy player. Assigning the 15th pick to the Bears, and the 16th to the Raiders provides some interesting insights. Looking at Rich Hill’s draft chart, the Bears sent out the equivalent of around 409 draft points. This comes out to about the eighth pick in the draft. It’s nowhere near enough for what Mack is worth. The week one overreaction here is that regardless of what Oakland does, they’ve already lost the trade.

Last Word

As the year goes on, we will provide overreactions to each week of football. Some of them are going to be outlandish, while others will be based on facts and statistics. Only time will tell how many of them will end up looking good, and which are incorrect. For now, these were our Week One overreactions. See you in the Super Bowl, Patrick Mahomes.

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Chicago Bears general manager Ryan Pace made a move Saturday that declared to the NFL that he is all-in with this team. Khalil Mack is now a member of the Chicago Bears. The coaching staff and roster is where Pace wants them. The weapons to win a Super Bowl are now in Chicago. Even better for Pace, he didn’t have to push his entire stack all-in to accomplish this.

The Chicago Bears Show They Are All-In With Trade for Khalil Mack

ESPN’s Adam Schefter broke the official news of the trade early in the afternoon.

There were a lot of teams at the Khalil Mack table. Pace accomplished the equivalent of holding a low pair and converting it into a winning hand. Schefter tweeted the terms of the new contract a couple of hours later

The impact of the trade on Chicago’s defense, not to mention on their entire team, is incalculable. One of the main questions for the Bears heading into 2018 was where the pass rush production would come from.

The Impact on the Defense

Leonard Floyd was the ninth overall pick for Chicago in 2016 but has only managed 11.5 sacks in those two seasons. He’s also been hurt and out of the lineup for 10 games over that time. Floyd is also facing another setback to start 2018. He suffered fractures to two fingers on his right hand in the preseason. He’s expected to play Week one against the Green Bay Packers but with a cast or club protecting the hand which will limit his effectiveness.

On the other side of the defense, Vic Fangio was looking at throwing a mixture of free agent signee Aaron Lynch, Isaiah Irving and rookie Kylie Fitts onto the field to see if any or all of them could equal one competent pass rusher. That is no longer a concern.

The Bears haven’t had anyone record double-digit sacks since 2014 when Willie Young reeled in ten. That’s also the year Mack exploded on the NFL scene with the Oakland Raiders as the fifth overall pick. In those four seasons Mack has 40.5 sacks, an average of ten per year. That number has him tied for third in sacks among defensive ends since 2014.

The pocket for quarterbacks playing the Bears, namely Aaron Rodgers, Matthew Stafford and Kirk Cousins, just got a lot more uncomfortable. That should lead to an increase in turnovers. Cornerbacks Kyle Fuller and Prince Amukamara, along with safeties Adrian Amos and Eddie Jackson, gelled into a hard-hitting secondary last season but only managed eight interceptions. That number should go up as the seconds they will expected to hold coverage go down.

The Impact on the Offense

The acquisition of Mack should also make a big impact for the Bears on the offensive side of the ball. The team gained 5,106 yards on offense last season and scored 264 points. Both totals put them ranked at 29 in the league last season. Divide the points into the yards gained and you get an average of 19.3 yards of offense to score one point. Multiply that by seven and the Bears end up needing to gain an average of 135 yards to score seven points.

What does that mean? Part of that number is the offense not taking advantage of the scoring opportunities that did arise. That’s what Pace spent the early part of the off-season addressing. In 2017 the Bears fielded a group of receivers that would embarrass a semi-pro team. For 2018 they now have a corps of professional wide receivers in Allen Robinson, Taylor Gabriel and second-round draft pick Anthony Miller, along with tight end Trey Burton.

The other part of that number tells of a defense having problems getting off the field on third down and failing to create turnovers. The offense was operating on longer fields and having problems scoring because of it. The farther a team has to drive, the better chance a mistake ends their scoring chance. The Bears didn’t create enough three-and-outs or turnovers to allow their offense to have more possessions on the plus side of the field that the league’s top offenses enjoyed.

For example, the Super Bowl LI Champion Philadelphia Eagles turned 5.852 yards of offense into 457 points in 2017, an average of 89.6 yards for every seven points scored. The New England Patriots averaged 96.6 yards per seven points. The top teams in the NFL get that way by making the game easier on themselves.

Last Word

That is what Pace has accomplished by trading for Mack. Have the Bears answered all their question marks heading into the 2018? Of course not. The next test facing this team is finding out whether or not Mitch Trubisky really is genuinely a franchise quarterback.

But what is good for the Chicago Bears is that Khalil Mack instantly makes them more dangerous on both sides of the ball. With the price he paid in draft picks and a record contract Ryan Pace has made it clear to the league that he is all-in with this roster. This team is now past simply being a playoff contender and is now Super Bowl caliber.

Embed from Getty Images

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Chicago Bears general manager Ryan Pace made a move Saturday that declared to the NFL that he is all-in with this team. Khalil Mack is now a member of the Chicago Bears. The coaching staff and roster is where Pace wants them. The weapons to win a Super Bowl are now in Chicago. Even better for Pace, he didn’t have to push his entire stack all-in to accomplish this.

The Chicago Bears Show They Are All-In With Trade for Khalil Mack

ESPN’s Adam Schefter broke the official news of the trade early in the afternoon.

There were a lot of teams at the Khalil Mack table. Pace accomplished the equivalent of holding a low pair and converting it into a winning hand. Schefter tweeted the terms of the new contract a couple of hours later

The impact of the trade on Chicago’s defense, not to mention on their entire team, is incalculable. One of the main questions for the Bears heading into 2018 was where the pass rush production would come from.

The Impact on the Defense

Leonard Floyd was the ninth overall pick for Chicago in 2016 but has only managed 11.5 sacks in those two seasons. He’s also been hurt and out of the lineup for 10 games over that time. Floyd is also facing another setback to start 2018. He suffered fractures to two fingers on his right hand in the preseason. He’s expected to play Week one against the Green Bay Packers but with a cast or club protecting the hand which will limit his effectiveness.

On the other side of the defense, Vic Fangio was looking at throwing a mixture of free agent signee Aaron Lynch, Isaiah Irving and rookie Kylie Fitts onto the field to see if any or all of them could equal one competent pass rusher. That is no longer a concern.

The Bears haven’t had anyone record double-digit sacks since 2014 when Willie Young reeled in ten. That’s also the year Mack exploded on the NFL scene with the Oakland Raiders as the fifth overall pick. In those four seasons Mack has 40.5 sacks, an average of ten per year. That number has him tied for third in sacks among defensive ends since 2014.

The pocket for quarterbacks playing the Bears, namely Aaron Rodgers, Matthew Stafford and Kirk Cousins, just got a lot more uncomfortable. That should lead to an increase in turnovers. Cornerbacks Kyle Fuller and Prince Amukamara, along with safeties Adrian Amos and Eddie Jackson, gelled into a hard-hitting secondary last season but only managed eight interceptions. That number should go up as the seconds they will expected to hold coverage go down.

The Impact on the Offense

The acquisition of Mack should also make a big impact for the Bears on the offensive side of the ball. The team gained 5,106 yards on offense last season and scored 264 points. Both totals put them ranked at 29 in the league last season. Divide the points into the yards gained and you get an average of 19.3 yards of offense to score one point. Multiply that by seven and the Bears end up needing to gain an average of 135 yards to score seven points.

What does that mean? Part of that number is the offense not taking advantage of the scoring opportunities that did arise. That’s what Pace spent the early part of the off-season addressing. In 2017 the Bears fielded a group of receivers that would embarrass a semi-pro team. For 2018 they now have a corps of professional wide receivers in Allen Robinson, Taylor Gabriel and second-round draft pick Anthony Miller, along with tight end Trey Burton.

The other part of that number tells of a defense having problems getting off the field on third down and failing to create turnovers. The offense was operating on longer fields and having problems scoring because of it. The farther a team has to drive, the better chance a mistake ends their scoring chance. The Bears didn’t create enough three-and-outs or turnovers to allow their offense to have more possessions on the plus side of the field that the league’s top offenses enjoyed.

For example, the Super Bowl LI Champion Philadelphia Eagles turned 5.852 yards of offense into 457 points in 2017, an average of 89.6 yards for every seven points scored. The New England Patriots averaged 96.6 yards per seven points. The top teams in the NFL get that way by making the game easier on themselves.

Last Word

That is what Pace has accomplished by trading for Mack. Have the Bears answered all their question marks heading into the 2018? Of course not. The next test facing this team is finding out whether or not Mitch Trubisky really is genuinely a franchise quarterback.

But what is good for the Chicago Bears is that Khalil Mack instantly makes them more dangerous on both sides of the ball. With the price he paid in draft picks and a record contract Ryan Pace has made it clear to the league that he is all-in with this roster. This team is now past simply being a playoff contender and is now Super Bowl caliber.

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Khalil MackOne of the best players in the National Football League is on the move. According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, the Oakland Raiders have reached an agreement to ship Khalil Mack to the Chicago Bears. Among the compensation the Raiders are receiving for Mack, according to Schefter, are the Bears first-round picks in the 2019 and 2020 NFL Drafts.

This trade has been a long time coming for Oakland. Mack reportedly is looking for a record-setting contract, and the Raiders have been unable to meet his asking price. Mack has yet to report to the Raiders facility and thus has missed each of the teams preseason games.

While the exact terms of the deal are currently unknown, any trade for Mack is expected to cost two first-round picks, per multiple league sources. In addition to trading for Mack’s rights, the Bears will also need to give Mack a new contract prior to him actually playing.

Mack initially entered the league as the fourth overall selection in the 2018 NFL Draft. After a promising rookie season in which Mack recorded four sacks and 75 tackles, the talented edge rusher brought his game to a new level in his second season.

In 2015, Mack recorded 15 sacks and 87 tackles while playing in all 16 games. Mack earned First-Team All-Pro honors for his work and began to establish himself as one of the great pass rushers in the league.

Oakland went 12-4 in 2016, in large part thanks to Mack’s efforts. In his third year, Mack recorded 11 sacks, 63 tackles, five forced fumbles, and even recorded the first interception of his career. He was a borderline unstoppable force for a division-winning Raiders team, earning his second straight First-Team All-Pro selection.

Mack continued his dominance in 2017, recording 10.5 sacks, 78 tackles, one forced fumble, and one fumble recovery. While the Raiders disappointed in 2017, Mack still managed to earn his third straight Pro Bowl selection.

Main photo:
Embed from Getty Images

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Khalil MackOne of the best players in the National Football League is on the move. According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, the Oakland Raiders have reached an agreement to ship Khalil Mack to the Chicago Bears. Among the compensation the Raiders are receiving for Mack, according to Schefter, are the Bears first-round picks in the 2019 and 2020 NFL Drafts.

This trade has been a long time coming for Oakland. Mack reportedly is looking for a record-setting contract, and the Raiders have been unable to meet his asking price. Mack has yet to report to the Raiders facility and thus has missed each of the teams preseason games.

While the exact terms of the deal are currently unknown, any trade for Mack is expected to cost two first-round picks, per multiple league sources. In addition to trading for Mack’s rights, the Bears will also need to give Mack a new contract prior to him actually playing.

Mack initially entered the league as the fourth overall selection in the 2018 NFL Draft. After a promising rookie season in which Mack recorded four sacks and 75 tackles, the talented edge rusher brought his game to a new level in his second season.

In 2015, Mack recorded 15 sacks and 87 tackles while playing in all 16 games. Mack earned First-Team All-Pro honors for his work and began to establish himself as one of the great pass rushers in the league.

Oakland went 12-4 in 2016, in large part thanks to Mack’s efforts. In his third year, Mack recorded 11 sacks, 63 tackles, five forced fumbles, and even recorded the first interception of his career. He was a borderline unstoppable force for a division-winning Raiders team, earning his second straight First-Team All-Pro selection.

Mack continued his dominance in 2017, recording 10.5 sacks, 78 tackles, one forced fumble, and one fumble recovery. While the Raiders disappointed in 2017, Mack still managed to earn his third straight Pro Bowl selection.

Main photo:
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