“With the saga of Hurricane Irma nearly through, we are FINALLY rewarded with some good ol’ fashioned home cooking Buccaneers football to warm our storm battered souls! We’ve waited patiently in anticipation for this new era in Tampa, and on Sunday, our journey begins with the injury riddled Chicago Bears.”
The Bears come into this contest absolutely devastated at the WR position. They came into the Falcons game limping; they came out crawling. With WR Cam Meredith going to IR along with the since released Rueben Randle before week one, HC John Fox planned to lean on 2nd year pro Kevin White AFTER he himself had just come back from the IR his rookie year; only to lose him early in the Atlanta game. But, sometimes an injury can open up a diamond in the rough opportunity for a 5’6 179 back out of North Carolina A&T affectionately nicknamed, “The Human Joystick” in college.
RB Tarik Cohen shocked the NFL by tallying a franchise rookie record 158 total yards in his debut, overshadowing RB Jordan Howard’s potential in year two. New OC Dowell Loggains will still feature Howard at tailback, but expect Cohen’s number for touches to skyrocket this week with the lack of playmakers on offense. It’s very possible we’ll see both Howard and Cohen on the field for a large amount of plays together; especially on third downs due to the injury of Chicago’s primary third down guy, Benny Cunningham. That forced Loggains to insert Howard on third downs. Though his pass protection is better than Cohen’s, he made it a somewhat tough decision on his OC dropping a potential game winning TD at the 1 yard line on that final drive deep into Falcons territory. When they inserted Cohen by himself on a couple third down opportunities, he missed a few key blocks which led to one of four sacks on QB Mike Glennon. Loggains and Fox aren’t exactly sold on Cohen’s blocking, but he is absolutely a real playmaking threat with every touch of the ball. The rookie led the Bears in week one in all receiving categories. The Bucs Defense we’ll see him all over the field so physicality at the line of scrimmage will be of the utmost importance against ANY undersized football player.
QB Mike Glennon played his type of game for Chicago last week going 26-40 216 with no TD’s or INT’s, but was sacked four times from several blitzes, not picked up by an offensive line still missing 3-time Pro Bowler Kyle Long after his gruesome ankle injury last November. On top of that, Glennon will not try to escape the pocket, rather move up the pocket. If Bucs defenders can stay patient in the game plan, they’ll get to him a few times without a doubt. Earlier in the week Glennon was asked about coming back to Tampa; “I would just love to win.”
A strong focus will be on TE Zach Miller for the Bucs defense as well. With so many out of action for Chicago, expect Glennon to look for Miller a ton on play action fakes allowing to him to get the ball out quickly to avoid sacks. But, that’s all dependent of a decent Bears run game. If they can’t run, they can’t play fake.
Finally, Chicago gave up 321 through the air to, understandably, a great offense in the Atlanta Falcons.
But this isn’t a new trend for the Bears secondary dating back to last year in terms of giving up gigantic plays. Falcons unknown wideout Austin Hooper scorched them for an 88-yd TD and another 40-yd catch late in that game. Fully expect multiple deep shots for DeSean Jackson and a few 50/50 balls for Mike Evans.
“This game just has the recipe to be a classic Ray J butt kicking. One that we haven’t witnessed at the Pirate Ship in a while and desperately need for the city. Bucs 35 Bears 10. Siege The Bears.“