The Chicago Bears travel to face the Washington Redskins to wrap up Week 3 on Monday Night Football. The Redskins have won seven straight meetings between the two clubs and 13 of the last 15 dating back to 1989.
Shutting It Down
The Bears will enter this Monday Night Football showdown 1-1 after dropping their Week 1 game to their division rivals from Green Bay and winning a nailbiter last week over the Broncos.
The Bears are built around their NFL-leading defense. Despite the limited success of the Bears offense, Chicago made it to the playoffs last year as division winners as they rode the success of their tremendous defense.
The Bears get to the quarterback and disrupt the backfield with the help of Khalil Mack and Leonard Floyd. The defensive backfield is led by safety Eddie Jackson and cornerback Kyle Fuller. Although they lost safety Adrian Amos, who was a Pro Bowler last season, the Bears replaced him with HaHa Clinton-Dix and have not seemed to lose a step.
The questions surrounding the Bears all reside on the offensive side of the ball. We have seen sparks from Mitch Trubisky from last year, but the trust from coach Matt Nagy has seemed to regress. Chicago has not pushed the ball downfield at all and has barely moved the ball at all on offense in the first two weeks.
Trubisky is 42 for 72 to start of the season with 348 yards, no touchdowns, and one interception. Rookie running back David Montgomery leads the team with 80 yards rushing despite a limited role, but look for Nagy to get him more involved moving forward. The Bears’ top receiver is Allen Robinson, who has 11 catches for 143 yards.
The Bears will look to get their offense going to take some of the pressure off their defense and build some confidence in Trubisky this week. Defense wins championships, but it’s hard to get to the playoffs without an offense.
Close But Not Quite
The Redskins will be looking to pick up their first win this week over Chicago. They have suffered losses to the Eagles and Cowboys in the first two weeks by a combined margin of 15 points.
Washington has a couple of pleasant surprises on offense to be excited about despite not being able to pick up a win. Quarterback Case Keenum has thrown for 601 yards and five touchdowns with no interceptions. Keenum seemed to be in place as a bridge QB while the team waited for rookie Dwayne Haskins to be ready. Apparently, no one told Keenum this, and he has been off to a roaring start.
The primary beneficiary of Keenum’s success has been rookie wide receiver Terry McLaurin. The 24-year-old has 10 catches for 187 yards and two touchdowns over the first two weeks. This week against the Bears tough defense will be his biggest test so far this season.
A spot where the Redskins have struggled is in the running game. With the injury to starting running back Derrius Guice, Adrian Peterson has stepped back into the top spot for them at the age of 34. Peterson had 10 carries for just 25 yards and one touchdown last week.
The Redskins have had success on offense so far this year, but this will be their biggest test of the season against the Bears defense. Lucky for them, if the Bears don’t change anything on offense, it may only take two or three scores to win this one.
What To Expect
The Bears defense will be stout as usual, and I believe their offense will get rolling this week more than in the past. The Bears should control this game for the most part. I think they will be able to keep possession by establishing the run and eventually win in a close, low-scoring game.