Brett Duke/Associated Press
The Chicago Bears’ postmortem wouldn’t have changed much (if at all) had they somehow stunned the New Orleans Saints in the Wild Card Round. Their 21-9 loss only cemented the fork in the proverbial road at which they stand.
Should the Bears blow things up?
A week ago, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reported the Bears were expected to retain head coach Matt Nagy after he led them to the playoffs in two of his first three seasons. He had reportedly “taken a heavier hand in play-calling, which has helped him down the stretch.”
However, the Bears offense struggled Sunday against the Saints. They finished with only 239 yards of total offense, and a big chunk of those came on the game’s final, meaningless drive.
The Bears also have to decide whether to re-sign quarterback Mitchell Trubisky, whose fifth-year option they declined back in May. Veteran wide receiver Allen Robinson II, who hauled in a career-high 102 catches for 1,250 yards and six touchdowns, will join him in free agency.
Heading into Sunday’s game, Rapoport reported “there is no certainty” the Bears bring back Trubisky, but he had a chance to “change their mind” with a win over the Saints. Instead, he failed to crack 200 passing yards and didn’t throw a touchdown pass until garbage time.
Here’s the cold reality: The Bears aren’t a bad team, but they aren’t a good one, either. They backed into the playoffs thanks to an Arizona Cardinals loss, and they have more losses than wins (including playoffs) over the past two years.
But it can be hard for NFL teams to admit that they’re in need of a rebuild, especially after making a trip to the postseason.
Instead, the Bears will likely make a few tweaks, bring back most of the 2020 roster and proceed to have another mediocre year in 2021.