Bears vs. Commanders Prediction: Eberflus' last stand?
Kay Biggerstaff - USA Today Sports

Bears vs. Commanders Prediction: Eberflus' last stand?


by - Senior Writer -

As if trying to stomach that pitiful loss on Sunday wasn't bad enough, the Chicago Bears are back in action tonight as they get set to face off against the 2-2 Washington Commanders on Thursday night. This will be the perfect opportunity for the Bears to bounce back and put all that pain and suffering aside for at least another week.

However, this is more than just a game for the Bears, as the entire national audience will have a chance to watch them play. They can either do well and prove they are improving as a team, or they can continue to find new ways to lose, making the case for them being the worst team in the league that much easier.

Looking at the remainder of their schedule, there may be three more games where they will either be favored or have a shot to win. This means it could be win now or start facing the harsh reality that you may wind up with the No. 1 pick in the draft for a second straight year if you choose to keep it.

Here are some things to look for ahead of tonight's contest.

Is this the last game for Matt Eberflus?>

Following the Bears fourth quarter meltdown on Sunday, all the attention shifted toward the organization and whether they would move on from Matt Eberflus as head coach. Had this not been a short week, they very easily could've, but that could come into question again should the Bears lose this game.

Since taking over this team, Eberflus is 3-18, including his current 14-game losing streak. That will not cut it in this business, and he has the highest odds of being fired this season. Granted, the McCaskey family has never fired a coach midseason, but there is a first time for everything. Considering the Bears will have a mini-bye after this week, it would give the Bears a chance to move on and have his replacement ready to go by week six.

How does Justin Fields respond?

It may have taken more than two years, but Justin Fields finally started to look like an NFL QB last Sunday, at least from a passing side of things. Fields set a franchise record by starting the game 16-16, and he reached the 300-yard mark for the first time in his career while also throwing for four TDs. Yes, there was a fumble and an interception mixed in, but he did a complete 180 from his week three performance, which is all you can ask for.

Now the question becomes, was his game only that good because of the defense he faced, as Denver has the worst defense in the league? Washington, on the other hand, has a legitimate defense, and it all starts with the pass rush of Montez Sweat and Chase Young. Both know how to get after the QB, and both will give the Bears offensive line fits. That is where the legs of Fields will come into play.

Everyone knows this man can run and be an extraordinary runner, but the Bears have held him back on that this season. If there were ever a time for them to let him get loose, this would be the perfect night, as the Bears need to pull out all the stops to win this game.

Injuries, injuries, injuries

You could make a case that part of the Bears struggles this season have come from injuries, especially on the defensive side of the ball. Anytime three of your starting four DBs are out at the same time, you are asking for trouble, and the Bears have been in a lot of trouble, which forced them to add some DB help to their roster.

While it does look like some of these injured pieces will be returning this week, you have to wonder if they will be on some snap count. Granted, Sam Howell may not be the QB Russell Wilson is, but he has played better than many expected this season and has Terry McLaurin, Curtis Samuel, and Jahon Dotson at his disposal, which could give the Bears fits if they are not at 100%.

Prediction: Bears lose 20-16

If this game were in Chicago, I would like the Bears chances a lot more, but it isn't, as Chicago will hit the road this week. Also, hitting the road on a short week is never easy and tends to end badly for the visiting team. With their playoff hopes practically gone just one month in, Chicago needs a win in the worst way to instill some confidence back into the locker room.

This will be one of their best chances to get that win, as there are not many games left where you can honestly say the Bears will have a shot at winning. Look for the Bears to play a competitive 60-minute game again, but they will come up short yet again as the Commanders hold on for the 20-16 Thursday night win, sending the Bears to 0-5.

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