The Bears Have That Look About Them

Brad Biggs at the Chicago Tribune answers your questions.

One of the most impressive things from the preseason was the Bears’ few penalties. During the Matt Nagy years, the Bears seemed to have far too many penalties, often at very inopportune times. Is it wishful thinking, or do the Bears thus far seem much more disciplined under Matt Eberflus? — Norm G.

The Bears were really good in three preseason games at limiting penalties, and you certainly would look for that to carry over to the regular season. Penalties are going to happen and will pop up at inopportune times. Are the Bears more disciplined? Possibly. They appear to be more organized. You’re not seeing the pre-snap penalties on offense that came with confusion and struggles getting the play calls in and that sort of thing. I think that is what most people found irksome about the offense under Nagy. The Bears had way too many pre-snap penalties and burned too many timeouts because the sideline operation wasn’t smooth.

One of the most encouraging things about the preseason, and there weren’t many because it’s, you know, the preseason, was the small number of penalties that the Bears committed. As’s the questioner implies, I think that this may mean that the team might be more disciplined.

One of the biggest questions for me all preseason was why the Bears over under was 6 1/2 wins. It seems high. But the bookies usually know what they’re doing, and if fans are pounding me under there must be reasons for it. This could be one of them.

Disciplined teams that make very few mistakes can steal a lot of games. I always thought that the Indianapolis Colts, Matt Eberflus‘s last organization, was often one of the teams that do this fairly consistently. They seem to win a lot of games despite, to my eye, not having as much talent on paper as the other elite teams in the league.

I’ve been around long enough to know what a team that is getting ready to over-achieve looks like. The Bears definitely have that feel about them this year. Perhaps the Bears may be better than people think this year simply because they allow other teams to beat themselves.

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