1.) Run the Ball; Pass the Ball
The Texans have been one of the worst run defenses in the league through the first two games. They have allowed 163 yards per game and 326 yards in the first two games. David Montgomery is coming off a 122-yard outing and leads the league in broken tackles with eight. With Lucas Patrick seemingly retaking the center position for the Bears, the offensive line should be at its best. Getting Montgomery the ball will also open up the passing game for Justin Fields. Last week against the Packers, the Bears had 11 passing attempts and only 28 total on the year. There need to be more opportunities to stretch the field and flip the field. The Bears started most of their drives inside their own 25 against the Packers, and they couldn’t get past midfield. Using the run game and pass game complementarity will get the Bears moving and lead to a win.
The Bears will also need to help Justin Fields more than they have. Against the Texans, they should start Fields with short, easy passes to get him comfortable. Last week against the Packers, Fields looked confused and hesitant to pull the trigger on a lot of passes. He had an open receiver downfield multiple times and instead took the check down. If the Bears want to win, they need to get Fields comfortable in the passing game. He can gain momentum and start attacking the secondary by giving him short, easy throws, leading the Bears to a big win.
2.) Defend the Run!
The Bears gave up 203 rushing yards to the Packers in Week Two. The Texans haven’t successfully run the ball, but Dameon Pierce and Rex Burkhead are still a dangerous backfield. Pierce, a rookie out of Florida, drafted in the fourth round, has 102 yards rushing this season. Burkhead is a 9-year veteran who played for the Super Bowl-winning Patriots in 2018. While he isn’t in his prime, he has been productive, gathering 39 receiving yards and 40 rushing yards against the Colts. The Bear’s interior defensive line has been subpar this year, but they have a chance to shine this week. They need to shut down the Texan’s run game and make Davis Mills throw the ball. If the Bears can shut down the Texan’s run game, they put the secondary in a position to make plays. The defense must stop the run to beat the Texans and gain momentum going into New York and against Saquon Barkley.
3.) Flip the Field
The Bears started inside their own 25-yard line multiple times against the Packers. If they want the offense to succeed against the Texans, they need to cross midfield quickly and consistently. With the lack of a passing attack, the Bears found it challenging to cross midfield in Green Bay. Against a much weaker Texans defense, the Bears need to move the ball and get into the Texan’s territory. If they can be persistently in Texans’ territory, they have a much better chance of controlling the game and coming away with a win.
The Bears are coming off an upsetting loss against the Packers. The offense looked sloppy and unorganized. The defense missed too many tackles and couldn’t stop the run. They didn’t seem to play to Matt Eberflus’s HITS principle. However, they are still 1-1 on the season and are playing a weaker team. The momentum heading into gameday seems even; however, the Bears are playing at home, so they may have the upper hand. The Bears should look to get back in the driver’s seat and calm the fanbase down with a convincing win against the Texans.