The King of the North does not reside in Chicago and hasn’t in seven years.
Last time the Bears were a top of their division looking down to their rivals was in 2010, when they posted a 11-5 record and represented the NFC in the Championship game at Soldier Field, where they lost to their division rival – the Green Bay Packers, 21-14.
Since that devastating loss on Jan. 23, 2011, the Bears have struggled to defeat their division opponents. In the last seven years, the Bears are 12-28.
To this date, the Bears have three division wins since John Fox took over as head coach in 2015, with the last one coming on Halloween night last season against the Minnesota Vikings.
That was 410 days ago, or one year, one month and 15 days.
Win Now … Succeed Tomorrow
With the Detroit Lions and Vikings still remaining on the schedule the Bears will have opportunities to get that much needed win. Winning now, will set the standard of what is expected moving forward from the Bears’ organization in 2018 and beyond, which is being in contention to win a division title each and every season.
For Mitch Trubisky, to live up to that standard it is imperative he ends the season strong and that starts with improving in the second meeting against the Lions and Vikings. In the first game against the Vikings, Trubisky had a fumble and interception and against the Lions, Trubisky mishandled a snap, which was returned for a touchdown.
Taking care of the football will be the first priority heading into each respective rematch for the rookie.
And if Trubisky gets another opportunity to close out the game on the final drive, like he did against the Vikings and Lions, he must find a way to win.
The Kid Has Been Close
In Trubisky’s first career start, there was 2:32 left in the fourth quarter and the Bears’ offense started on its own 10-yard line with two timeouts left. Instead of what could have been a glorious first game for Trubisky, he threw an interception on the first play, which eventually led to the game-winning field. Vikings won 20-17.
But against the Lions, Trubisky drove the offense down the field in the closing seconds, which included a 19-yard run by the quarterback on fourth-and-13 to move the chains and a 15-yard pass to Dontrelle Inman on the next play that put the Bears on the Detroit 28-yard line. But that was all for nothing due to former kicker, Connor Barth, kicking the game away with a missed field goal. Lions won 27-24. ?
On Saturday, Trubisky will get his shot at redemption against the Lions. And the perfect way to avenge that heartbreaking loss in Chicago is to lead his offense on a game-winning touchdown drive in Detroit.
If a similar situation happens on New Years Eve against the Vikings, where Trubisky has to lead the team in the closing seconds to secure a victory, that will give him a great opportunity to learn from his past mistakes. But regardless, as long as Trubisky improves in each game and wins, that will give fans reassurance that the Bears are trending in the right direction.
It’s been too long since the Bears have been a legitimate threat in the NFC North and hopefully, Trubisky can make the Bears king once again.