Chicago Bears: 5 biggest takeaways from the Week 10 win vs. the Panthers

New Chicago Bears DE Montez Sweat annihilates tiny Panthers QB Bryce Young. (Quinn Harris/Getty Images)
New Chicago Bears DE Montez Sweat annihilates tiny Panthers QB Bryce Young. (Quinn Harris/Getty Images) /
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Chicago Bears, Kyler Gordon
Kyler Gordon, #6 of the Chicago Bears, celebrates with #9 Jaquan Brisker and #31 Jaylon Jones after breaking up a pass against the Carolina Panthers at Soldier Field. (Michael Reaves/Getty Images) /

Montez Sweat isn’t the only notable player helping to unlock the Chicago Bears’ defense.

2. Kyler Gordon, 2nd year Chicago Bears CB, seems to have reached a new level.

When the Chicago Bears drafted CB Kyler Gordon with their first pick in the second round in the 2022 NFL Draft, the decision was met with a lot of skepticism from Ryan Poles critics.

George Pickens, a man whose stock rose quickly in the lead-up to the draft, felt like a no-brainer at the time. After Pickens’ antics last week in just his second season combined with Gordon’s outstanding play when healthy this year, I think this is worth revisiting.

Gordon played perhaps his best all-around game as a Chicago Bear on Thursday Night Football in a victory. Known affectionately as “Spider-Man,” he was feeling himself afterward.

Granted, it was the Carolina Panthers. Adam Thielen is closer to retirement than his prime as their top WR, and Bryce Young is far from the Stephen Curry-Joe Burrow hybrid that a certain former Lion claimed him to be.

Pro Football Focus isn’t a perfect way to analyze play, but when you pass the eye test and then see numbers like this, it’s easy to see why it’s so well-respected.

Kyler Gordon was making tackles in the run game and locking up his man. He even put two pressures on the QB from the Nickel position. It was a dominant performance.

This graphic also shows why the Monsters of the Midway moniker may be returning sooner rather than later. All five of those players on that list are starters at the age of 28 or younger, and the 27/28 years old Sweat/Billings are playing the best football of their careers despite being vets.

As much as I’ve criticized Matt Eberflus for his actions as the Head Coach, I must also agree that Matt Eberflus is performing exceptionally well as the Defensive Coordinator. So far, only the game against the Los Angeles Chargers sticks out as a game where we didn’t have answers.

We’re playing defense again in Chicago. I hope we can keep supporting the offense this way when Justin Fields returns.

3. Finally: The Chicago Bears have an offensive line worth believing in.

Ever since the return of Teven Jenkins to the offensive line and especially since he was paired with rookie sensation Darnell Wright on the right side of the line, the significant improvement of the offensive line has been apparent.

Then Braxton Jones returned from his neck injury, and I think it’s safe to say that we haven’t seen clean pockets for our quarterback this consistently in a very long time – perhaps even since the days of Smokin’ Jay Cutler.

I’m not sure what happens when Nate Davis returns from injury, but with Cody Whitehair struggling this season, I’m intrigued to see where they insert him into the lineup. The Jenkins/Wright combination on the right side has been lethal.

Football is very often won in the trenches, and lately, the Chicago Bears have been doing just that. When we’re bullying guys up front and our defensive line is forcing quick passes with pressure, this looks like a completely different team.

I’m excited to see how this all plays out.