- The Vikings initially kept their players close to the line of scrimmage, obviously worried more about the run and the short pass than anything that the Bears wide receivers could do deep against them. It looked from the start like they weren’t going to give Mitch Trubisky the nice comfortable throws he had against Houston last week. Which makes sense. But if that was the goal, it failed.
- Trubisky looked good and the run game succeeded. The Bears offense looked a lot like it did the previous two weeks.
- The Bears once again got Trubisky on the move and used it in a bit of a misdirection game that appeared to me to work. Certainly the Vikings were flowing in the direction that the Bears wanted them to.
- The Vikings inability to keep Trubisky in the pocket on drop backs was also notable. He burned them badly with this legs.
- Was Matt Nagy calling plays again? He seemed to be staring at that laminated card an awful lot.
- David Montgomery ran well and that is the key to success for the Bears offense. No doubt about it. But they still aren’t using him in the passing game the way that I expected them to when they drafted him.
- I like the way that Trubisky is playing. I’m happy for him and I’m happy for the Bears. But you guys do know that he’s cutting the field in half every time he rolls out, right? I could be wrong but I don’t think this will ever be an elite offense if they have to run the passing game like this. You have to be able to throw from the pocket and make the defense play the whole field to succeed at a high level in the NFL.
- The Bears evidently decided that the best way to get to Kirk Cousins was to apply pressure. They blitzed on the first play of the game and immediately put Cousins in a hole and made him uncomfortable. I thought they did a reasonably good job from there.
- The Vikings did a good job of setting up mismatches as the Bears found their linebackers occasionally matched up with the Vikings best receivers.
- Adam Thielen got his first touchdown on a broken coverage. Kindle Vildor and Duke Shelly both followed the outside receiver. From the players’ reaction I got the impression that it might have been Vildor’s fault.
- Both Vildor and Shelly gave up plays but neither was really bad today. They aren’t guys you’d want playing every game. At least not yet.
- The Vikings really like using the full back as a lead blocker from the I-formation and playing straight power football. It works for them. Dalvin Cook seems to be able to recognize daylight and cut back through it in a flash. It’s very impressive.
- The number of explosive plays that the Bears defense gave up on the ground today was disturbing. I haven’t put my finger on the reason and there may be more than one. But their run defense will need work this week.
- Kirk Cousins gets really wound up during these big games. I’m not sure its what’s best for his team.
- Chris Myers (play-by-play), Greg Jennings (analyst) and Jennifer Hale (reporter) were your announcers. I didn’t learn much from Jennings.
- Midway through the second quarter. The Vikings line up to punt on 4th and 1 inside their own 35 yard line. The Bears call time out. The Vikings send their offense onto the field. The guess here is that the Bears picked up something, knew the fake was coming and wanted to set their return team. The Vikings then sent the offense out because they knew the jig was up. The Vikings didn’t make the 4th and 1. Nice job all around for the Bears, there. The Bears eventually took the field goal.
- Cairo Santos nailed his field goals today including a 48 yarder and a critical kick with 1 minute left in the game from 42 yards. The streak continues.
- The Vikings had some bad drops in the first half including a potential touchdown by Irv Smith. It wasn’t really an issue for the Bears.
- Penalties weren’t a huge issue for either team. In particular, the Bears offense had few if any untimely penalties. Their margin for error is pretty narrow.
- Cameron Dantzler intercepted Trubisky in the end zone with 4 minutes left in the game with a 3 point lead. It was a critical mistake and a devastating play. The type that bad teams allow to happen. It won’t get the attention that it ordinarily would because the team won. But it will be yet another strike against Trubisky after an otherwise stellar day.
- This was essentially an elimination game against a mediocre teams that was playing reasonably well. The Bears offense came through and kudos to them for taking care of business. The Bears defense has work to do after the Vikings ripped them apart on the ground.