This week, the Lions travel to Chicago to take on the Bears in their first of two matchups in twelve days. For the last several years it has been a pretty one-sided affair, which gave way to the birth of the hashtag #WeOwnTheBears. This season may be different though. For the first time in a long time, the Bears are leading the division this late in the season, sitting at a record of 5-3.
While most Bears fans will fight you on this, the fact of the matter is that they’re doing so in spite of quarterback Mitchell Trubisky, not because of him. Even in the midst of their franchise’s revival, he has been quite prone to dumb mistakes and seems to just falter for weeks at a time. If the Lions want a chance Sunday, they’ll need to capitalize on that.
Bold prediction of the week: Lions defense feasts as Mitchell Trubisky produces three turnovers on the day
With a strong ground attack and top-tier defense, the Bears simply need to not let their air attack be a liability in order to take care of business Sunday. The Lions, on the other hand, are struggling through the air, on the ground, and on defense. They will need someone to step up if they want to continue to own the Bears.
That someone is the defense. Unfortunately, the Lions don’t play a lot of defensive football that forces the quarterback into errors. Most notably, Matt Patricia has deployed would-be pass rushers into contain schemes whenever facing a mobile quarterback, and that could be the case on Sunday as well.
While that contain scheme forced folks like Aaron Rodgers and Russell Wilson to take sacks or throw the ball away, against a guy like Trubisky it could prompt a dumb decision that leads to a turnover. According to Pro Football Focus, Trubisky’s accuracy percentage is 53.1 perecent, good for 25th in the league. Even better, however, is if the Lions don’t get pressure, they still may get a chance at some passes as Trubisky has the 30th-best Clean-Pocket Grade at 66.8.
At the end of the day, the Lions defense can’t control whether Mitch Trubisky makes dumb decisions. What they can control is how uncomfortable they make him. If they can make him uncomfortable, then we may see him make lots of dumb decisions. The Lions will need that to happen if they want a chance in Sunday’s ball game.