As we enter the next stages of a weird offseason in the NFL, the Chicago Bears have their eyes on returning to the playoffs. Chicago missed out on the playoffs in 2019 after going 8-8 on the season but it felt like they were a quarterback away from potentially reaching the postseason.
The Bears addressed quarterback, receiver, tight end and offensive line in free agency, hoping that would push their roster a little more. But the most recent NFL offseason event might be the biggest indicator for the future of the team.
Chicago made seven picks in late April’s 2020 NFL Draft, addressing tight end with the selection of Cole Kmet at No. 43 overall and then defensive back with Jaylon Johnson at No. 50 overall on Day 2. From there, the Bears would add edge rusher Trevis Gipson, defensive back Kindle Vildor, wide receiver Darnell Mooney and offensive linemen Arlington Hambright and Lachavious Simmons on Day 3.
It’s still too early to tell if the moves pushed the needle much for Chicago with only about three or four of those selections expected to play a significant role in their rookie season.
The praise has been all over the place for Chicago’s draft mostly criticizing the move to draft Kmet in the second round. But they have received praise for other picks including Johnson and Mooney.
Still, it’s tough to tell where the Bears sit in terms of the division race. The Green Bay Packers and Minnesota Vikings were both playoff teams a year ago and figure to be the favorites going into 2020. As for the Bears, well they are sort of in the middle of the pack. Most US Sportsbooks listed at Sportsbettingdime are reporting a desfavorable hit on the Bears odds to win the Super Bowl after the draft, where they now sit at 19th place.
Chicago is an interesting team in terms of where to finish next season.
Vegas has their win total set at 8 right behind Green Bay and Minnesota in the NFC North. But with the new schedule coming out and four favorable games to start the year, Chicago could get off to a hot start and change things.
Add in that they will finish with five of their final seven against the division and the NFC North might not be decided until those final weeks of the season. Heck, it could be Week 17 when Green Bay visits the Windy City.
One thing is for sure, the position battle for starting quarterback will be the big focal point this offseason. Whoever wins the job between Mitch Trubisky and Nick Foles will need to play well in order for the Bears to have a chance.
But can they? Stay tuned.