The Chicago Bears season is over, but we’re already looking for ways to improve in 2019.
Crushing, demoralizing, devastating and gut-wrenching are all words that come to mind when describing the end to the Chicago Bears 2018 season.
After far exceeding expectations this year by finishing 12-4 and winning the North, it’s a small consolation for the way that fans are feeling after Cody Parkey‘s partially blocked field goal attempt to close the book on 2018.
It’s going to take a while for fans to heal and get over the heartbreaking loss. It’s difficult to think about anything other than that missed kick, but the good news is that Organized Team Activities are only 98 days away as of Monday.
Alright, maybe that’s not great news, but with each passing day, fans we’ll move one day closer to seeing their beloved team on the field again in a meaningful game. Between now and that time, there are things that this team can (and should) do to improve this team to make another run next year.
1. Acquire more draft picks
The Bears have a pick in Rounds 3, 4, and 5 and two picks in Round 7 (one of them compliments of the Philadelphia Eagles). While the team has virtually every major contributor coming back next season, there are still ways the team can and must improve in the 2019 NFL Draft.
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It’s important that the team uses the draft to address some necessary, though not critical, needs. They’ll have to add depth at cornerback, offensive tackle, and likely safety. Obviously, this all depends on what the team does with players like Bryce Callahan, Bobby Massie, and Adrian Amos, but even still, it never hurts to have depth. After all, the Bears aren’t unlikely to be as healthy as they’ve been this year again next year.
With only five picks and not one until the third round, Ryan Pace is going to have to get creative to get a couple more. He must realize that this team’s window to win is now while Mitchell Trubisky is on a rookie deal and do everything he can to maximize it.
That could mean trading a fan favorite like Jordan Howard to acquire a couple more picks. Despite what Matt Nagy said all season, it was evident over the course of the season that he simply does not fit in this offense as well as other running backs might. That’s not an indictment on Howard — as he’s an outstanding running back — but isn’t the right fit for what Nagy wants to do.
Whether or not he deals Howard, Pace will have to find some way to add to his draft capital before April.