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NFC North Week 5 recap: Is it time to take the Bears seriously?

Nothing makes sense in the NFC North.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers v Chicago Bears Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

Bears pull off TNF upset over Bucs, 20-19

Maybe it’s time to start taking the Bears seriously. With wins over bad teams and an embarrassing performance against the Colts, it was easy to write this team off against the Buccaneers on a short week. But the Bears didn’t back down, and while it didn’t look pretty, they beat a very good Bucs team to move to 4-1 on the season.

Nick Foles turned in a very pedestrian performance against the Bucs defense and the Bears run game was even worse, but the offense was very opportunistic and cashed in for scores any time they were near the red zone.

The plan on defense for the Bears was clearly to limit the damage done from Tom Brady and the Bucs passing attack. Though they were outgained in total yards 339-243, the Bears defense did a remarkable job of clamping down on the Bucs offense and limiting them to four field goals and one touchdown.

The Bears will face a tough test over the course of the next two months matching up against teams like the Rams, Saints, Titans, Vikings and Packers. We’ll see if they can keep up this momentum and make a run for the division title.

Next game: @ Panthers (3-2)

Vikings fall to 1-4 after Seattle’s late minute heroics, final score 27-26

Hey, look. The Lions aren’t the only team that blows double-digit leads in this division. After getting out to an early 13-0 lead, the Vikings let it slip away fast as the Seahawks scored 21 unanswered points to make it 21-13. Kind of reminds you of the Lions-Saints game this year (sorry, not sorry).

Anyway, the Vikings really had no business losing this game. They outgained Seattle by over 100 yards, nearly doubled their time of possession, and didn’t allow the Seahawks to convert on a single third down. This probably would have been a win for them had they not gotten rid of half of their starters on defense during the offseason, but alas.

At 1-4, Minnesota’s only hope is to sneak into the playoffs with that extra wildcard spot, but it will be a tough task for them. However, their remaining schedule isn’t too tough.

On the bright side, Minny’s offense looks pretty solid again after an abysmal start, and their commitment to running the ball is as strong and effective as ever. I’m not a fan of giving running backs big contracts, but Dalvin Cook is a mad man and having Alexander Mattison as your backup is a luxury.

Next game: vs. Falcons (0-5)

Packers on BYE

Next game: @ Bucs (3-2)

NFC North Standings after Week 5

1. Green Bay Packers (4-0)
2. Chicago Bears (4-1)
3. Detroit Lions (1-3)
4. Minnesota Vikings (1-4)


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After winning their first NFC North title in 30 years, the Lions have unfinished business this offseason. Stay updated with Jeremy Reisman through Pride of Detroit Direct, our newsletter offering up exclusive analysis. Sign up with NFCNORTH30 to get 30% off after your free trial.