Well, this is truly rock bottom. After one of the most tumultuous weeks for a franchise, with Justin Fields calling out the coaching staff, Alan Williams resigning for still unknown reasons and the players not being told that Williams was gone, Braxton Jones going on IR, the Chicago Bears still had the defending Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs to play on the road at Arrowhead Stadium.
It went about as well as driving through the city during a blizzard in the middle of January. The Bears were out played, out coached and out-classed by the Chiefs stars of Patrick Mahomes, Travis Kelce, Chris Jones and Andy Reid (who the Bears could have had in 2013 after he was fired from the Eagles). It wasn't even a game from jump, despite the Bears forcing the Chiefs to punt on their first drive, it was all over from there. Kansas City went on to score on the next six drives in a row including four touchdowns and two field goals to take a 34-0 lead at halftime.
It was a comedy show of errors for the Bears on both sides of the ball. After the Chiefs had taken a 21-0 lead early in the second quarter, the Bears got the ball back looking to generate any sort of momentum. A field goal at that point would have done Chicago a lot of good, just to have points. However, you have to remember that this is the Chicago Bears offense, so Bears fans can have no nice things. After a delay of game penalty was called, without the head coach, offensive coordinator or quarterback calling a timeout to save the yardage, the Bears finally got a screen pass to Khalil Herbert that had some promise, getting six yards before Chiefs corner Trent McDuffie popped the ball out and KC recovered. Then after a field goal to make it 24-0, the Fields finally found DJ Moore on a beautiful deep ball. The only problem was that Moore let the ball slip through his hands and the next play was an interception which led to a three play touchdown drive, ending in a one-yard Isiah Pacheo run.
Justin Fields had his fourth game of passing for less than 100 yards, going 11-for-22 with 99 yards with an interception and a garbage time touchdown to DJ Moore. Fields still also managed to lead the Bears in rushing with 11 carries and 47 yards, while Roschon Johnson and Khalil Herbert combined for 15 carries for 69 yards. Moore led the team with three catches and 41 yards, while Darnell Mooney was only targeted once and didn't catch a pass.
Yesterday was a searing indictment on the Bears coaching staff. The only side of the ball that did something positive was the special teams, with Cario Santos hitting a 21-yard field goal and an extra point, while punter Trenton Gill had one punt inside the 20-yard line and had a long of 58.
We are nearing the Marc Trestman levels of bad. That first half against the Chiefs were the most points given up by the Bears since the infamous Sunday Night game agaisnt the Packers at Lambeu Field in 2014. In that game, Aaron Rogers threw for six touchdowns in the first half and the Bears went onto lose 55-14, tied for the most points given up in franchise history.
A team that hired a defensive head coach, spent five second and third round picks, two long term free agent contracts and they even signed a guy right before training camp to a $10-million deal for defensive players to have the worst defense in the league is astounding. The Tampa-2 style of defense doesn't work in the modern NFL, especially if you don't have an elite pass rush or strong secondary depth, which the Bears have neither. All of that has led to a franchise worst 13 game losing streak dating back to last year. If things don't turn around shortly, Matt Eberflus will become the Bears version of Hue Jackson.
All of this has left me with one obvious conclusion: Matt Eberflus and the rest of the coaching staff need to be fired. The only person that should stay should be special teams coordinator Richard Hightower to take over as interim head coach. It has become clear that Eberflus simply cannot be an NFL head coach. He can't call plays on his side of the ball at an average level, let alone an elite one. Eberflus gives some of the worst answers possible to the media, including a gem in the morning as of the writing of this article to ESPN 1000.
As well as this one after the game in his presser.
Even if the team isn't winning or playing to expectations, it's the job of the coach to keep them motivated and playing hard. For a guy in Eberflus, who brought in with the "HITS," and "Loafs," principles to get guys flying around the ball and playing hard, I have yet to see that once this team play hard in the 20 games Eberflus has coached. For all the hatred that Bears fans had for Matt Nagy, at the very least he was a good leader, kept that locker room together and didn't finish under .500 until the 2021 season. Obviously, these coaches inherited much different situations, but the fact remains that I would rather have Matt Nagy as a head coach than Matt Eberflus. Now bear in mind that is if those two guys were my only options, but it still says a lot.
The Bears have never-fired a coach in the middle of a season. Not Trestman, not Dave Wannstedt, not Dick Jauron or any other horrible coach they have hired. While I expect the Bears to continue the trend, now is the time to buck it. The Bears have been a mess since making the Super Bowl in 2006. They have made the playoffs three times (2010, 2018 and 2020) and have a 1-3 record, with the lone win coming against the 7-9 Seahawks. A pick-six to B.J. Raji, the double doink agaisnt the Eagles and the Mitch Trubisky NVP have been the Bears playoff legacy in the 2010s/2020s. This is how the Bears and George McCaskey have operated since then and is why they are in the situation they're in.
However, this presents a unique opportunity to redirect the Bears franchise. If they do something that will actively make them a better football team and allow this team to move to finally find the right coach, then they should. It's time to start operating like a multi-billion dollar franchise like they are, not a mom-and-pop shop. The McCaskey family has the financial resources to pay two coaching contracts and whole heck of a lot more. Either operate like an NFL team in the 21st Century or sell the team and let someone will treat this team with the respect it deserves, not just a cash-cow to be milked every fall.