Fri Oct 9 3:55pm ET
By ANDREW SELIGMAN
AP Sports Writer
Chicago Bears coach Matt Nagy yells from the sideline during the first half of the team's NFL football game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Chicago, Thursday, Oct. 8, 2020. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)
Chicago Bears quarterback Nick Foles (9) throws a pass during the first half of the team's NFL football game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Chicago, Thursday, Oct. 8, 2020. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)
CHICAGO (AP) Coach Matt Nagy unloaded on the Chicago Bears' struggling offense, venting about incorrect route running, breakdowns in blocking technique and missed opportunities for quarterback Nick Foles in the win over Tampa Bay on Thursday night.
It was an usual tone for the usually upbeat Nagy. But he was clearly agitated a day after the Bears beat Tom Brady and the Buccaneers 20-19.
''The details right now in this offense are not there,'' he said Friday. ''So that's our job as coaches to make sure that we get these freakin' details right. It's as simple as that.''
Nagy is thrilled that the Bears are 4-1, their best start since the 2012 team won seven of its first eight games. But the margin between 4-1 and 1-4 or even 0-5 is a thin one.
The Bears once again had to rally from a double-digit deficit, this time after falling behind 13-0 in the first half. They joined seven other NFL teams with three victories in the first five games after trailing by 10 or more, according to the Elias Sports Bureau.
Chicago also staged two big fourth-quarter rallies to win in Weeks 1 and 3, rallying from 17 down at Detroit and wiping out a 16-point deficit at Atlanta. In between, they nearly blew a 17-point lead against the New York Giants.
But while those three teams are a combined 1-11, beating Brady and the NFC South-leading Buccaneers at least lends the Bears some credibility. They just need to get more from the offense. And their coach is not happy.
''You need to do everything exactly the way it is supposed to be done,'' Nagy said. ''So if that means running a route at five steps and not three steps, or if that means running a route at three steps and not seven steps, that has to happen. If it means to set a certain way and block somebody, that's what that means. If it means to throw on a certain time with your feet, do that. If it means to make the right play call at the right time, then do that as coaches. Meaning myself. And so we're all in this thing together. But I refuse to allow this happen.''
Khalil Mack. The three-time All-Pro had two sacks to match his highest total since a Week 3 win at Washington last season. He went 17 games without two or more, his longest streak since he was drafted by Oakland in 2014.
WHAT NEEDS HELP
Facing a dominant front for the second time in five days, the Bears again could not get their ground game going. They ran for 35 yards Thursday after managing 28 rushing in a loss to Indianapolis.
By comparison, they had 414 yards through the first three games. And that production in the run helped set up the play-action game.
Though the stakes were nowhere near as high this time, winning the rematch with Brady can only give Foles' standing a boost.
The Super Bowl 52 MVP didn't exactly put up eye-popping numbers in their first matchup since he led Philadelphia to a championship win over New England. He was 30 for 42 with 243 yards and a touchdown and an interception. But he made enough plays to help the Bears squeeze out another tight victory
The offense overall. It's not hard to see why Nagy is frustrated. After all, the Bears are averaging 21 points and rank near the bottom of the league in total offense and rushing as well as yards per pass.
LG James Daniels was still being evaluated after leaving Thursday's game with a pectoral injury, Nagy said. He was replaced by Alex Bars. Nagy also had no update on safeties Deon Bush and Sherrick McManis, who missed the game because of hamstring injuries, or kicker Eddy Pineiro (groin). He is on injured reserve and has not played this season.
0 - The Bears haven't scored a point in the third quarter this season. And on two full possessions plus one that stretched into the fourth, the Bears managed just 39 yards. Chicago faced third-and-long situations on its first two drives of the quarter and was forced to punt.
The Bears visit Carolina on Oct. 18.
Five Hot Plays: Week 13
Jacksonville Jaguars kicker Chase McLaughlin is not a viable starter this week. Though he has made all three of his field-goal attempts and both of his extra-point attempts in two games played this season, the sample size is too small and it's fair to question his reliability compared to other kickers who have played most of the season. As a result, there are better options to start at the position for Week 13.
Jacksonville Jaguars tight end Tyler Eifert is not a worthy starter this week against Minnesota. In nine games played, the TE has only surpassed 40 yards once, and he has also been very inconsistent in his weekly numbers. Because the Jaguars don't have a strong passing attack, this makes Eifert too risky to start and thus irrelevant for fantasy purposes.
The Jacksonville Jaguars Defense should remain benched or on waivers this week. The Jags play Minnesota, a team that has solid receivers in Adam Thielen and Justin Jefferson, an elite back in Dalvin Cook, and a QB in Kirk Cousins who can get hot any given week. Meanwhile, Jacksonville ranks among the bottom of the league in most defensive categories, which keeps this unit well off the fantasy radar this week.
Jacksonville Jaguars wide receiver Keelan Cole Sr. is only a low-end flex for this week. Cole has produced at least five targets in three of the past five games but has only gotten over 40 yards in two of the past five games. The Jaguars don't have a strong passing attack due to their multiple changes at QB. Cole should not be trusted this week given his inconsistent stats.
Jacksonville Jaguars wide receiver D.J. Chark Jr. is a WR3 for Week 13 against the Vikings. As the WR1 on the team, Chark does see targets, but he doesn't always produce. The WR has gotten at least seven targets in four of the past five games but has only gotten at least 45 yards in three of those contests. Nevertheless, his weekly volume should keep him in the starting tier against a Minnesota team allowing the second-most points to fantasy wideouts.
Jacksonville Jaguars wide receiver Laviska Shenault Jr. should be considered nothing more than a lower-end flex against the Vikings this week. In the past four games, the rookie has only eclipsed 40 yards and five targets once. Jacksonville has no stability at QB and its passing attack isn't high-powered. As a result, Shenault doesn't produce consistent and decent numbers each week. There are better options to start this week.
Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback Mike Glennon will once again get the start this week but should remain benched in fantasy. Glennon posted 235 yards and two touchdowns last week in an impressive performance, but that was only one game and the journeyman has not proved he is worthy of a start each week. The Vikings are middle-tier against fantasy QBs, but there are certainly better, proven options out there.
Jacksonville Jaguars running back James Robinson is an RB1 this week against the Vikings. The 22-year-old has now rushed for at least 99 yards in four of the last five games and has been stellar this season as the lead back for the Jags even though his value in the passing game has been minimal. The Vikings are middle-tier against fantasy backs, but Robinson's high weekly volume sets him up to produce once again.
Las Vegas Raiders wide receiver Hunter Renfrow had a good performance last week against the Falcons, and he will look for another solid performance this week against a poor Jets secondary. He is a consistent possession receiver but lacks the explosion to be considered a viable fantasy option. Renfrow is averaging 3.5 catches and 46 yards per game this season, so those numbers make him a fringe flex option. He has not found the end zone in four consecutive games, but the Jets Defense allows a lot of points. He consistently catches passes every game, but his ceiling is low.
Las Vegas Raiders tight end Darren Waller disappointed last week against a bad Falcons Defense but will likely bounce back this week against the Jets. The Jets Defense ranks 29th against opposing tight ends, and Waller is the second-most expensive DFS tight end this week. Waller has had a few bad performances this season but always seems to bounce back. He has followed up his disappointing performances this season with at least five catches in the following game. Look for Waller to rebound in a big way this week. He is definitely a must-start TE1 in Week 13.
Indianapolis Colts TE Trey Burton (non-injury) fully participated in practice Friday, Dec. 4, and is not on the injury report for Week 13.
Fantasy Spin: Burton has been targeted 11 times over the last two games and has two touchdowns during that span. He could be a possible low-end No. 1 tight end in deeper leagues.
Las Vegas Raiders RB Devontae Booker (back) fully participated in practice Friday, Dec. 4, and is not on the injury report for Week 13.
Fantasy Spin: Booker likely will receive most of the work at running back with Josh Jacobs ruled out. He will have a favorable matchup this week and can be considered a low-end No. 2 running back or flex option.
Las Vegas Raiders RB Jalen Richard (chest) fully participated in practice Friday, Dec. 4, and is not on the injury report for Week 13.
Fantasy Spin: Richard may have a bigger role in the offense with Josh Jacobs not available to play. He has a chance to be a flex option in deeper point-per-receptions leagues but is not a must-start option.
Las Vegas Raiders wide receiver Henry Ruggs III had three catches on five targets for 56 yards last week and sees a favorable matchup this week against the Jets. Ruggs had a 36-yard reception last week against the Falcons, and the Jets have allowed 38 passing plays over 20 yards this season. His fantasy value is still limited considering he is not even averaging two receptions per game. He also has just one touchdown and has only helped the team move the chains eight times all year. The big-play potential is there against this Jets secondary, but Ruggs has proved to be unreliable. Fantasy owners can feel comfortable leaving him on the bench this week.
Indianapolis Colts WR T.Y. Hilton (non-injury) did not participate in practice Friday, Dec. 4, but is not on the injury report for Week 13.
Fantasy Spin: Hilton posted a season-high 81 yards last week and picked up his first touchdown of the season. He will see a handful of targets this week and could be at least a flex option because of the matchup.
Indianapolis Colts QB Philip Rivers (toe) fully participated in practice Friday, Dec. 4, and is not on the injury report for Week 13.
Fantasy Spin: Rivers has thrown at least two touchdowns in four of the last six games and has posted solid passing numbers over the last several weeks. He could be a possible low-end No. 1 quarterback in some deeper leagues this week.
Las Vegas Raiders running back Devontae Booker is set to start Sunday against the Jets due to Josh Jacobs (ankle) being out. Jacobs is a workhorse back, so Booker's touches have been limited throughout the season. He has just one game where he has seen double-digit carries, and he took advantage of that opportunity. While Booker has seen a limited amount of attempts, he is averaging 5.5 yards per carry. The Jets have actually been decent against the run, allowing 3.8 yards per carry so far this season. Booker will likely share some touches with Jalen Richard and Theo Riddick, but he is worthy of starting consideration.
Arizona Cardinals WR DeAndre Hopkins (non-injury) fully participated in practice Friday, Dec. 4, and is not on the injury report for Week 13.
Fantasy Spin: Hopkins continues to be one of the top receivers in the NFL and is a must-start option in all fantasy leagues.
Atlanta Falcons kicker Younghoe Koo has been cleared to play in Week 13 against the Saints. Koo was dealing with a quad injury, though he is good to go for the divisional rematch with New Orleans. The 26-year-old has been the best kicker in fantasy football this year, which shouldn't change against the Saints. Koo made all three of his field-goal attempts in his previous meeting with New Orleans and is a top-five option this week.
Las Vegas Raiders quarterback Derek Carr struggled mightily last week against the Falcons but will have a good chance to bounce back against the 0-11 Jets. The Jets have allowed 21 touchdown passes and a passer rating of 104.8. Carr has played well against the Jets in his career, averaging 210 yards and over two touchdowns. Other than last week's performance, Carr has also played well on the road. He has nine touchdown passes and a passer rating of 103.1 away from Las Vegas. Carr does not put up the volume numbers to be in the QB1 conversation, but he should have QB2 value against a horrendous Jets team.