Bear Down: 2017-18 Season Preview


Chicago Bears offensive tackle Kyle Long isn’t a star, but is admired for his selfless contributions to the team – attributes that are valuable in the workplace, according to a new study. (Chris Sweda/Chicago Tribune/TNS)

By Michael McKay, Staff Writer

When the weather starts to cool and the leaves change color, that signals the start of football season.The Chicago Bears kicked off their 2017-18 season last Sunday, Sept. 10th against the Atlanta Falcons. After a tremendously disappointing 2016-17 season, having a record of only 3 wins and 13 losses, the Bears are not showing many signs of having an improved record for this season.

The Bears finished their preseason with a record of two wins and two losses. Because the preseason games do not count towards the official record for the season, the Bears primary starters on offense and defense did not play as many snaps.

Starting quarterback Mike Glennon started in three out of the four games, and only threw for 243 yards, two touchdowns, and two interceptions. The real star of the show was now-second string rookie quarterback Mitchell Trubisky. Through four games, Trubisky threw for 364 yards, three touchdowns, and no interceptions.

Impressed by the rookie’s fantastic preseason, many Bears fans are calling for the team to start Trubisky over Glennon, including junior Adnan Perazic.

“I think [Trubisky] is a great young player and he should be starting,” said Perazic. “We need to build from the bottom up, which means getting the young guys in so they get more familiarized on how the league works. Based on the preseason, he’s a great QB for the Bears since we’ve been lacking in that specific position for a few years now.”

Speaking of lacking in the quarterback position for years, the Bears finally released long-time quarterback Jay Cutler during the off-season. Cutler was not a popular quarterback, especially him being notorious for throwing interceptions. The release of the QB was a move the Bears believed could help freshen the offense up.

Junior Paula Ostapkiewicz is very excited to see what the Bears will do without Cutler receiving the snaps.

“[Cutler] really sort of dragged the team down. He couldn’t even throw a pass to his own teammates,” said Ostapkiewicz. “I’m really just excited to see what we can do without him. It was a smart move.”

After the final preseason game, the Bears kicked off their first official regular season game last Sunday, Sept. 10th against the losers of the 2016 Super Bowl, the Atlanta Falcons. The Bears fell to the Falcons, with a score of 23-17. A prime factor resulted in the loss due to the injuries suffered before and during the game for the Bears.

Three primary starters and game changers for the Bears are out for the entire season, line-backer Jerrell Freeman (pectorals), wide-receiver Kevin White (broken collarbone), and wide-receiver Cameron Meredith (torn ACL). Those three are just the tip of the iceberg, however. Running-back Jordan Howard, defensive-back Prince Amukamara, wide-receiver Markus Wheaton, guard Kyle Long, and defensive-lineman Eddie Goldman were all either held from the game or left the field early. The countless injuries among key players brought the team down to a loss and may impact the future of the season significantly.

Junior Leah Nano commented on the significant injuries and how it impacted the team.

“I think the injuries are going to take a significant toll on [the Bears]. It seems like someone new is injured every second,” Nano said. “The wide receivers being injured will have the greatest impact because the chemistry between a quarterback and his receivers is key. The injuries break up that chemistry, and with a ton of down receivers, the bond won’t be as strong and the team might not succeed.”

Even though the Bears started the season off with a record of 0-1, a loss to a Super Bowl team by a score of 17-23 is nothing to be ashamed of. The riddance of Jay Cutler as a quarterback gave the team a fresh start and does help give an extra boost.

However, the Bears will need to make significant changes to their lineups to cover for their injury losses. The Chicago Bears will take on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in their first away game on Sunday, September 17th at 12:00 PM on Fox. Bear Down.