Despite disappointing ending, Bears enjoy strong season


Anthony Calabrese, Correspondent

Now the dust has settled on the 2018 NFL season, it is time to look back on what turned out to be a surprisingly successful season for the Chicago Bears.

In a game that Bears fans will never forget, the Monsters of the Midway lost to the defending champs, the Philadelphia Eagles, 16-15. It was an exciting back-and-forth game, but the only thing we will remember is how it ended.

The Eagles had just scored a touchdown on fourth and goal and failed the two-point conversion. The score was now 16-15 with just 56 seconds left. The Bears’ drive started off very well as Tarik Cohen returned the kickoff all the way to the Bears’ 42-yard line. A few passes to Allen Robinson put them in field goal range.

With only ten seconds left in the game, all Cody Parkey had to do was kick a 43-yard field goal, something an NFL kicker is expected to make. Parkey made it, but Eagles head coach Doug Pederson called timeout right before the ball was snapped. He attempted it a second time. The snap and the hold were both good. Parkey kicked it, and the ball bounced off the left upright, bounced off the front of the crossbar, and hit the ground. The kick was no good.

We later found out that the kick was tipped, but it was minimal solace to Bears’ fans who watched Parkey miss way too many kicks (field goals and extra points) this past season.

The way the season ended was devastating, but Bears fans should be happy. Last year, the Bears went 5-11. They were last in their division and were pretty much a joke. This year, they completely flipped around last year’s record and then some, going 12-4.

They won five out of six divisional games and only lost one home game. They also had five players voted to the Pro Bowl: Tarik Cohen, Akiem Hicks, Kyle Fuller, Eddie Jackson, and Khalil Mack, with quarterback Mitchell Trubisky being added later as a fill-in, the first Bears’ quarterback since Jim McMahon in 1985 to play in the Pro Bowl.

Fans should also be hopeful. Even though defensive coordinator Vic Fangio left the team for a head coaching job with the Broncos, the Bears will still have one of the top defenses in the league for years to come. The defense is too young and talented not to succeed. Also, Trubisky showed much improvement from last year’s season, and he will only get better with more experience. The same goes for head coach Matt Nagy. With the experience he obtained from this season, he will use it to become an even better coach and play caller.

This season didn’t end how we wanted it to end, but it was much better than any of us expected. Therefore, we should be grateful and excited for what’s next with this talented team. Bear down.