How each division rival made life easier on the Bears this offseason

Vince Carbonneau
May 18, 2024  (9:58)

Ryan Poles at the podium
Photo credit: dazn

How Each Division Rival Made Life Easier on the Bears This Offseason

This offseason, the Chicago Bears have improved significantly, thanks to general manager Ryan Poles and the addition of No. 1 overall pick Caleb Williams. Poles has built a strong roster around Williams, creating a favorable situation for the rookie quarterback.
The Vikings' Left Guard Issue
The Vikings failed to solidify their left guard position, leaving fans concerned about Blake Brandel's inexperience and inconsistency. Brandel, who played his highest number of snaps in 2022 with just 273, has a Pro Football Focus grade of 55.3. The Vikings' long-standing offensive line issues provide an opportunity for the Bears, who have struggled with sacks in recent seasons, to capitalize.
Packers' Cornerback Concerns
Green Bay has a top-tier cornerback in Jaire Alexander, but beyond him, their depth is shaky. They are relying on 2021 first-round pick Eric Stokes, who has been hampered by injuries, playing only 12 games over the last two seasons. Behind Stokes is 2022 seventh-round pick Carrington Valentine, who performed average in 2023. With Alexander playing only seven games last year, the Packers' cornerback situation is worrisome. The Bears, with their improved passing attack led by Caleb Williams, can take advantage of this weakness.
Lions' Failure to Replace Josh Reynolds
Josh Reynolds played a key role in the Lions' offense last season, catching 40 passes for 608 yards and five touchdowns. His departure to the Denver Broncos left a gap that Detroit failed to fill. The Lions are now counting on 2022 first-round pick Jameson Williams, who has struggled with injuries and suspension, catching only 25 passes for 395 yards and three touchdowns in two seasons. Offensive coordinator Ben Johnson has expressed frustration with Williams' slow progress, making the Lions' reliance on him a risky bet. This situation benefits the Bears as they face a potentially weakened Lions offense.
Overall, the Bears have benefited from their rivals' shortcomings, setting the stage for a promising season.
MAY 18   |   72 ANSWERS
How each division rival made life easier on the Bears this offseason

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