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Behind Enemy Lines: Beware This X-Factor On The Bears' Offense


The last time the Chicago Bears came to Lincoln Financial Field, the Eagles won in a rout by a score of 54-11. The Bears come to town this Sunday with a 3-7 record and a rookie quarterback under center.

For a preview, Jeff Dickerson covers the Chicago Bears for ESPN. You can follow his work @DickersonESPN.*

1. Why has Mitchell Trubisky been able to provide a spark since taking over as the starting quarterback?

Jeff Dickerson: The Bears offense is still extremely limited. So, while the offense has been a tad better under Trubisky, the Bears rank near the bottom of the league in total offense and points per game. That being said, Trubisky takes much better care of the football than predecessor Mike Glennon, who turned it over eight times in four games. The Bears are usually competitive when the offense doesn't turn it over. Trubisky also has a lot of natural athletic ability – that certainly helps. He can make big plays every now and again. Look, Trubisky isn't Carson Wentz, but the Bears think he gives them the best chance to win, despite the fact Trubisky only started 13 career games at North Carolina.

2. Jordan Howard's been impressive in his first two seasons, but what's the scouting report on Tarik Cohen, the dynamic fourth-round pick?

Jeff Dickerson: The Bears line up Cohen at running back and wide receiver. He's also the primary return man on kickoffs and punts. Cohen's extremely elusive and has great speed in the open field. Between offense/special teams – Cohen will probably touch the ball 15-20 times on Sunday. Don't be fooled by Cohen's size (5-6): he's a tough runner. The only negative is that Cohen sometimes tries to do too much, and ends up losing yards for the Bears.

3. The Bears' last four losses have all been one-score games. Is there a common theme as to why the team has not been able to win?

Jeff Dickerson: The Bears don't have enough talent or discipline to win close games. John Fox coached teams – at least in Chicago – inevitably find ways to lose – missed field goals, bad penalties, costly turnovers, busted coverages, etc. The Bears have committed almost every football sin imaginable under Fox, whose record with the Bears is 12-30.

4. How will the defense be impacted by the loss of Leonard Floyd?

Jeff Dickerson: Floyd had developed into the Bears' best pass-rusher. He will be missed. The Bears now have to turn to Pernell McPhee and Sam Acho, because outside linebacker Willie Young is also unavailable for Sunday (Injured Reserve). There will be a drop-off without Floyd on the field.

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