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*Pre-editor post (forgive any typos)
This was a slog of a game we all probably considered a ‘bad’ one for the Bears. Wasn’t the offensive explosion the last few games have been. Just a 7-3 lead at halftime for the Bears. It felt like they played down to the Jets.
My feeling from watching this live and on the re-watch…the Bears were a bit down, but I think the weather (gray, colder, a bit wet, and windy) cast a mood over the game and it seemed like the Bears knew they had this game and kinda coasted through the contest, reeling themselves in a bit because of the windy conditions (open FG attempt by them blew away 30 yards to the right after starting out down the middle).
It was 7-3 Bears at the half, but the Bears vastly outplayed the Jets – the Jets were helpless in this game. Undermanned and never a real threat. The Bears got stops pretty much whenever they wanted. 7-3 became 14-3 after three quarters and 17-3 early in the 4th quarter. The Jets snuck back to 17-10, and put some pressure on…but then the Bears popped right down the field and scored to make it 24-10 and just toyed with/sat on the Jets to the finish. It wasn’t the Bears’ best game but not their worst – they did what they had to do – handle the Jets at home with little worry.
The Bears caught a break with everyone in the division losing Sunday…they’re now in first place and playing Buffalo Week 9. After the Bills, the Bears have DET-MIN at home and then go to Detroit on Thanksgiving. I think you know this team is for real-real if they win two of the 3 games with DET-MIN-DET, and especially if they go in and whack the Vikings in a statement game.
If the Bears beat Buffalo and take two of their next 3, and then win at the Giants Week 13 – they jump to 7-4 hosting the Rams Week 14…at Chicago in December might be a sneaky win opportunity. If they split Weeks 14-15 hosting LAR-GB, they will be 8-5 going at the 49ers Week 16 for a win to go to 9-5. Week 17 at Minnesota may be for the division. 10 wins gets it done.
By virtue of the Lions loss Week 8 at home to Seattle, The Computer projects the Bears with 10 wins and the division title.
It won’t be long before we all cash in that win-total over/under ticket on the Bears. After Week 13, we should have that big bet in the barn.
Also, the Jets were involved in this game. Depleted on all fronts with a noodle-armed QB who isn’t very good at quarterbacking – they didn’t stand a chance here unless the weather aided. The Jets are headed to 5-11.
Fantasy Player Notes…
-- The main reason I re-watched this game…why did Tarik Cohen (5-40-0, 1-70-1/3) only have one catch? Thank God it was for a 70-yard TD.
This type of game flow is what concerns you about fully joining me in saying Tarik is an RB1 the ROS in PPR. Let me ask this, aside from the very obvious top RBs (Gurley…and, well, Gurley), what other RBs are so consistent that you would cry about Cohen having a slight dip…no more than the other guys having dips? Even Tyreek Hill has unamazing games for ‘reasons’. If you look for reasons to fear…you’ll find them with fantasy RBs (non-Gurley). However, don’t you have fears on every non-Gurley RB? Hell, James White is a god and you’re still wondering whether to start him every week…ditto the very productive/hot Marlon Mack.
Unless it’s a main carry guy, you’ll find something to fear because that’s what you do with fantasy RBs…not WRs, not TEs, not DSTs, not Kickers, not a 2nd QB – just RBs, and mostly just the pass catch specialists. It’s why Marlon Mack is in demand and James White is mildly in-demand right now. White super consistent and Mack…people were about to bail last week when he was ‘questionable’, but now he’s the hottest RB in fantasy.
Prior to this game that weather played a bit of a role, Tarik averaged: 7.3 catches (10.0 targets), 131.0 combined yards, 1.00 TDs per game over the three-game uprising/change in the offense. Those are MAJOR numbers. He had a 110 total yards, 1 TD game this week and we’re crying about touch counts? It’s like…I WON THE LOTTERY, but man look at all those taxes I have to pay. Really?
Cohen played his usual 50% of the snaps along with Jordan Howard. Nothing changed there. Cohen was part of the plan early. His two other targets were good ones just miss thrown. The weather was not helping. The Bears sat on the Jets…late in the game Howard ran the ball eight of the last 10 offensive snaps – as they grinded a tired Jets team into the ground. That seems to be the pattern…wide open 3+ quarters offense, Cohen as the lead weapon – then pound a tired defense with Howard late to run clock, etc.
Cohen is not going anywhere…he IS the offense -- except when they have a lead late and want to submit the opponent, then it’s Howard. Cohen has outscored almost all other fantasy RBs the past 4 games. I would not worry but note games like this can happen…just like the top guys will have 17 carries for 55 yards and no TDs and send you off crying.
Here’s the thing – you think you’re worried about Cohen, the current holder who REALLY doesn’t trust Cohen holding up would love to DUMP him ‘high’ on you – I advocate trading something hot of the moment for him if you can. Steal him from the doubters.
Many of you are faced with this specific possibility…your Marlon Mack (who you dutifully held) for Tarik Cohen (who you may have cut too soon). I’d rather find another way, so as to hold Mack (and EVERYONE of the masses wants to buy him low from you). I could argue both sides of Mack v Cohen ROS, but I’d say this about that kind of deal (PPR)…
1: Mack’s value is white hot right now…like very white/very hot. You get Cohen+ for him or don’t entertain it.
2: Mack has a tougher schedule ahead and he’s not built for main carry and not as heavy PPR so far. Mack getting banged up again would not be shocking, and last week when he was ‘iffy’ (another bad rumor by the mainstream) you would have made this trade in two seconds.
3: Cohen IS his team’s main weapon too…
Hold Mack over Cohen, I can’t argue. Trade Mack for Cohen+ a bit, I get it…I think I want Cohen over Mack in PPR ROS. I’d rather have both. But if you’re going to do Mack for Cohen, just note – I’ve not seen a player so in demand from FFM’ers by the masses in all my fantasy days as right here, right now on Marlon Mack. Don’t leave money on the table.
-- Don’t give up on Taylor Gabriel (4-52-0/6)…I know you want to. I know you don’t want to believe me, but how often am I wrong on these things? Look at him as a strong WR2…not sitting on your bench, overlooked, making you go ‘I have no WR depth’. Gabriel is legit. He’s better than Keenan Allen right now.
The Bears have shootout games ahead and that will take the offense back up. If Allen Robinson isn’t back, then I get a touch worried on Gabriel as the guy getting top coverage all the time. Gabriel is fine/promising/legit. Don’t panic.
Anthony Miller (3-27-1/3) is a bad WR and he’s going to cost the Bears a game soon if they don’t watch out. He may have in the Pats game. He’s not ready and he’s not that good…he shouldn’t have this push. No fear of him for Gabriel…none.
-- Trey Burton (3-18-0/4)…what happened to Burton last week? I don’t know, what happened to every non-Ertz/Kelce TE in fantasy last week? Evan Engram looks pretty good right now doesn’t he?
All non-Ertz/Kelce TEs are randomly producing, so Burton is just another one of them. I like the potential ahead as the Bears offense keeps jumping. This was an underwhelming game in weather…no big deal, yet…
Burton scored more than Uzomah or Njoku at least…
-- This was a down game for the Bears offense in general, but it looked fine…trouble on 3rd & longs because they didn’t get Cohen involved as much and the weather. Mitchell Trubisky (16-29 for 220 yards, 2 TDs/0 INT, 6-51-0) only completed 16 passes. In a down game with weather and a solid opposing defense – Trubisky still put up top QB fantasy numbers.
He’s a top 5 guy now, especially in 4pts per pass TD leagues – he may be #1-2 in 4pts per pass TD leagues because of his running ability.
Don’t fear Trubisky having a let down because the mainstream thinks he sucked before the season started, so they’re waiting for a bad game to re-pounce (a la Goff last year). Enjoy your Pro Football Focus membership…he was their #32 starting QB in the NFL for 2018 this preseason.
THEY are not the authority on Trubisky – I am.
The great I am…or the second greatest one, I should say.
-- Trenton Cannon (6-10-0, 3-12-0/4) should have had a better game and touches than this. I’m no fan but I thought he might have a sneaky good game on screen passes, etc., but…nope.
Elijah McGuire is about top come back to a hero’s welcome and Cannon will disappear.
-- Chris Herndon (1-16-1/2) is OF THE MOMENT. He’s not any great talent. I’d rather roll Michael Roberts among TE desperation over Herndon.
-- The Bears DST…a top fantasy DST this year – and Buffalo Week 9!!!
It’s after that that’s the problem: Stafford-Cousins-Stafford-Eli(?)-Goff-Rodgers is a terrible stretch. Six games, five unfavorable. If you roll them vs. DET…then 50% of the games would be considered ‘bad’ matchups. Goff-Rodgers is a terrible two game stretch late.
Everyone has DST despair. The Bears are like the one DST you might mix into a trade and get value on. OR just hold and be sure to have a spot open for a 2nd DST a lot of weeks ahead.
The Bears are THAT good with Khalil Mack, that they might be OK even in bad matchups. No Mack…we got issues ahead.
Snap Counts of Interest…
38 = Cohen
38 = Howard
52 = Kearse
41 = Burnett
32 = Roberts
19 = Rishard Matthews
16 = Peake
29 = Cannon
25 = Crowell