Giants vs Bears : The Chicago Bears (8-3) are on a mission to win the NFC North in head coach Matt Nagy’s first season. They made some bold moves to get themselves in position to do so, most notably trading for All-World linebacker Khalil Mack.
This Sunday, they will try to extend their division lead with a victory over the New York Giants (3-8), who have had cohesion problems on both sides of the ball this season.
Here are some top storylines before kickoff.
The Bears quarterback isn’t exactly setting the league on fire since Chicago traded up for him in the 2017 NFL Draft, but he’s been a catalyst to one of the most potent offenses in the league. The Giants should feel fortunate that Trubisky, one of the top scrambling quarterbacks in the league this season, will be watching from the sidelines.
But Trubisky’s backup, Chase Daniel, is no slouch. He is from the Andy Reid/Doug Pederson school of quarterbacking and once learned at the heels of Drew Brees.
Daniel will be starting for the second consecutive week for Trubisky (sprained AC joint). On Thanksgiving, Daniel completed 27 of 37 passes for 230 yards and two touchdowns in the Bears’ 23-16 win over the Detroit Lions.
Engram’s season from hell continues. What was supposed to be his breakout year — or at least a jump year — has been largely a disappointment due to injuries. He missed nearly four games due to a sprained MCL and then tweaked his hamstring before the game in Philadelphia Sunday and hasn’t take the field since.
Goodson has played in all 11 games this season, starting 10, and has recorded 38 tackles (25 solo) with two interceptions. He sustained a neck injury in the fourth quarter last week and was replaced by Tae Davis.
Rookie linebacker Lorenzo Carter has been limited with a hip ailment and is listed as questionable. Defensive end Kerry Wynn is no longer in the concussion protocol and is expected to suit up versus the Bears.
The Giants are well aware of the destruction Khalil Mack can do to an offense. He has been slowed by an ankle injury this season but he still has eight sacks and five forced fumbles to his credit. He’s a former NFL Defensive Player of the Year (2016) and is angling for the honor again.
Giants tackles Chad Wheeler and Nate Solder are bracing for the wrath of Mack on Sunday.
“Just a very professional mindset,” said Wheeler regarding his preparation. “It’s my job, so whatever I can do to get an edge, I’m going to do it. … He’s just relentless. A great player. He has an internal drive that sometimes I match, so you’ve got to bring it.”
“He’s got all the talent and qualities that you would ever ask for in a defensive end, but he plays with a really good team too,” said Solder, looking at the bigger picture. “They’re good across the board on their D-Line, they’re good across the board on their linebackers and defensive backs so it’s not just him, it’s the combination of everything that makes it that much more difficult.”