Can the defense continue its dominance?
The Chicago Bears defense has been a pretty good unit for most of the season. Getting off to such a horrible start really hurt the stats, though. The Bears rank 27th in scoring, giving up an average of 24.7 points per game. That is mainly from their first four games of the season.
In those games, they gave up 34.2 points per game. In their last eight games (in which they are 4-4), they've given up just 19.9 points per game. If they did that throughout the entire season, they'd rank about sixth in the league.
The Bears want to continue that this week. They were on track to doing that in the first game, giving up just 14 points until there were less than five minutes in the game. Part of the reason for that is having the proper personnel on the field.
On the Lions' key drives, defensive end Montez Sweat (as well as linebacker Tremaine Edmunds) was standing on the sideline watching all of the action. Head coach Matt Eberflus has a platoon system which keeps the number of snaps down. Eberflus says it is to keep the players fresh.
While that is all well and good, Eberflus has to find a way to give his players rest throughout the game and be flexible. On the drive in which Detroit took the lead, they went with a no-huddle offense. When that happens, there is no ability to substitute. Eberflus stubbornly gave Sweat a rest. With the no-huddle, Sweat had to watch as the Lions marched down the field, scored a touchdown, then got the two-point conversion to take the lead.
The secondary intercepted Lions quarterback Jared Goff three times. With Sweat coming to Chicago, the Bears' pass rush has been transformed. There is more pressure put on the quarterback, resulting in turnovers. The Bears have seven interceptions in their last two games. They hope to continue that trend this week.