Three Takeaways from Bears win over Lions
Mike Dinovo - USA Today Sports

Three Takeaways from Bears win over Lions

by - Senior Writer -

It has been a long time coming, but the Chicago Bears have finally put together a winning streak. It is the first time since Matt Eberflus took over as head coach that the team has won back-to-back games, and ironically enough, both came against division rivals. Those were also the first divisional wins of Eberflus' coaching career as he continues checking the boxes off his to-do list.

Say what you want about this team, but at 5-8, this team is only one game out of the final playoff spot record-wise, but they do need to jump quite a few teams in the tie-breaker scenarios. They most likely won't make the playoffs, but you have to like what you have seen from them lately, as they are playing much better and are starting to look like the team many hoped they would.

With two first-round picks, including the potential No. 1 overall pick, the Beras will have many options to choose from as to what direction this team goes next season. Much of that will come from how this team plays over the final month, as everyone knows this is an evaluation period, and their jobs could be on the line. Here are some takeaways from the Bears massive win against the Lions.

Justin Fields is your franchise QB

With the Panthers continuing to struggle and inching closer to the No. 1 overall pick, that pick will go to the Chicago Bears and could drastically impact this team's future. From guys like Drake Maye, Caleb Williams, Jayden Daniels, and Marvin Harrison Jr, Chicago will have their pick of the litter in terms of who they want to take to build for the future.

A lot of that conversation hinges on Justin Fields and what he shows the rest of the season, but at this point, QB is the least of their problems. Fields hasn't had the most success since coming into the league, but you can't blame him for the playcalling sometimes, as Luke Getsy hasn't always put him in a great spot. Despite that, Fields continues to say all the right things and is now starting to prove his worth on the field.

If the last two weeks, well realistically this past weekend, are any indication, Fields is the franchise QB the Bears have been searching for, and they shouldn't need to take one with the No. 1 overall selection. It is amazing what happens when you stop calling screenplays and let Fields be Fields. The offense can move the ball, and Fields is as dynamic as they come. As long as he can protect the football and play within his strengths, this team will be fine offensively if they continue to invest on that side of the ball.

Montez Sweat is worth every penny

When the Bears entered the offseason, they knew one of the biggest weaknesses on this team was their lack of a pass rush. They tried to improve that by going defense-heavy in the draft and signing Yannick Ngakoue, but that still didn't make a difference as they struggled to get after the QB.

Then came the trade deadline, where Ryan Poles shocked the NFL world by trading for Montez Sweat and immediately signing him to a four-year extension before he even played a snap. Deals like that typically never happen with a struggling team, but to sign him to an extension before playing a down was a bit of a risk.

Well, that was a well-calculated risk as Sweat has been as good if not better than advertised and has been worth every penny of his new contract. Not only has he set a new career high in sacks, but the Bears defense has been a top-five defense since his arrival and ranks No. 1 in the NFL in forced turnovers during that same stretch. His ability to create pressure and get after the QB has forced opposing teams into making poor decisions, leading to an increase in turnovers.

That wasn't happening earlier this season, and it was one of the main reasons why the Bears continued to struggle defensively. The presence of Sweat has not only improved the defense this season but also made him a guy they are going to build around next season in an effort to create one of the scariest defenses in the league.

Has Eberflus done enough to save his job?

Three weeks ago, all the talk around the Bears organization was Eberflus being on the hot seat and potentially out of a job come next season. You heard the candidates being listed as possible options for the Bears, and most fans wanted a change to happen.

However, given the recent run, the Bears have gone on, with their overall improved play, it makes you wonder if Eberflus has done enough to save his job for at least one more season. You could make the case either way, but one thing you can't take away from him is how much he has improved this defense since taking over the defensive playcalling. After firing Alan Williams early in the season, the Bears were left without a defensive coordinator, and instead of hiring one midseason, Eberflus chose to run things.

Although things didn't start great, it has been improving every week to the point where the Bears defense is stepping up virtually weekly. You also have to look at the overall play of this team, and it is hard to argue that they are playing better. Whether they have fully bought into this system is another question, but the team is starting to trust Eberflus more, which may be enough to keep him around for next season.

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