Are Ryan Poles and the Chicago Bears headed in the right direction?


Shawn Adler

The Bears beat the Kansas City Chiefs in Week 1 of the preseason 19-14.

Shawn Adler, Reporter

After week 12, the Chicago Bears sit in last in the NFC North at 3-9. I know a lot of Bears fans that are worried about the team this year. Even though many Bears fans are nervous, I have complete confidence in new general manager Ryan Poles.

Most Bears fans were excited for a whole new regime at the start of this season, as was I. However, some Bears fans were not aware that this year was a rebuilding season. General Manager Ryan Poles, at his first interview with the Bears stated that he was ready for a rebuild through the draft and free agency. 

In the 2022 NFL Draft, Ryan Poles was able to turn five draft picks into eleven picks. He showed his drafting skills as in the second round he took Safety Jaquan Brisker out of Penn State. Brisker has had an immediate impact on the team totaling 62 tackles, three sacks, and an interception, which to add was one of the most impressive catches I’ve seen this season. Poles solidified my faith in him even more, as in the fifth round of the draft he took Defensive Lineman Dominique Robinson out of the University of Miami(Ohio). Robinson showed that he is capable of taking on the role of an old Bears player Akiem Hicks, who was released this past offseason. Robinson has totaled 19 tackles and 1.5 sacks, all while only playing over 50% of a game’s snaps once this season. 

Coming into the 2022 season, as a Bears fan I expected a mediocre at best season, and maybe making it to the wildcard round and getting blown out. However, as this season has played out I was pleasantly surprised by the amount of losing the Bears have done this year. 

The biggest part of this season in my opinion is developing second year quarterback Justin Fields. Fields looked shaky last season under Matt Nagy, and I have a feeling that the best thing to happen to Fields this season is a new playbook.

Fields started off rocky this season, but these last three weeks he’s been lights out, passing for 441 yards, rushing for 385 yards, and throwing for eleven touchdows to one interception. 

As a Bears fan I’m incredibly happy with how Fields has progressed this season, and I can’t wait to see how he does next season when the Bears can truly be contenders.

At the trade deadline this season, the Bears made three impactful trades for the team. A week before the deadline, the Bears traded defensive lineman Robert Quinn to the Philadelphia Eagles for a fourth round draft pick in 2023. I like this move, especially since Quinn is old and has really fallen off from last season. 

The next move the Bears made shocked the NFL, as they traded linebacker Roquan Smith to the Baltimore Ravens for a second round pick, a fifth round pick, and linebacker A.J. Klein. This move surprised me, but it makes sense since it seemed like both Roquan and the team weren’t going to reach an agreement for a new contract in the offseason.

The final move the Bears made at the deadline was my favorite of the season, as the Bears traded a second round pick to the Pittsburgh Steelers for wide receiver Chase Claypool. Claypool is a 6’4 230 lb. receiver, who is incredibly physical and can help out with what Justin Fields does best, throw the ball deep down field. Another big part of the Claypool trade is the fact that opposing cornerbacks can’t continually double team receiver Darnell Mooney downfield. 

One of the biggest parts of the Bears continually losing this season is that they’re set to have a better draft pick in 2023. If the Bears have a top ten pick, I’d love to see them draft Wide Receiver Jaxon Smith-Njigba out of the Ohio State University.