Joniak: Bears Carrying Good Vibes Into Rams Matchup

Matt Nagy was pleased with how Mitchell Trubisky played in a win Sunday.

Jeff Joniak
November 13, 2019 - 5:54 pm
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(WBBM NEWSRADIO) -- The Bears (4-5) continued preparations Wednesday for their game at the Los Angeles Rams (5-4) on Sunday.

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-- It will be warm in Los Angeles on Sunday night, which means there's no advantage in preparing outside in the icy cold this week. So Bears coach Matt Nagy held practice indoors in the Payton Center. Tight end Trey Burton(calf), outside linebacker Isaiah Irving(quad) and linebacker Danny Trevathan (elbow) didn't practice. Rookie running back David Montgomery was limited with a sore ankle.  

-- Nagy isn't ready to say if Trevathan is bound for injured reserve after he was injured in a win against the Lions on Sunday.

-- Bears quarterback Mitchell Trubisky’s fourth game since returning from a shoulder injury comes against the respected Rams defensive front. "They do a lot of stuff up front with twists and getting pressure," Trubisky said. "Last year they kind of zoned us out and tried to keep everything in front ... kind of take away our big plays. We’ve got to find ways to score more points." The Bears beat the Rams, 15-6, last December.

-- A game within a game Sunday is the matchup of former Jaguars teammates in Bears receiver Allen Robinson and Rams cornerback Jalen Ramsey. "I would give us both of a little bit of an advantage," Robinson said.

-- Count on lots of chatter from Ramsey, one of the all-time greats at ear-hustling receivers throughout a game. Not letting Ramsey get on one's nerves is actually a key to the game, especially for a competitive and emotional player like second-year Bears receiver Anthony Miller. "There’s a psychology there," Nagy said. "There’s a little bit of stuff that can go on to get in your head so you don’t play your game. So, we’ve got to make sure that we don’t get into that."

-- Preparing for Rams star defensive tackle Aaron Donald is critical. Last season, Nagy rolled out Trubisky and stayed away from Donald as much as possible. He made one tackle. He's still disruptive even when he doesn't fill up the stat sheet. Trubisky must avoid dropping his eyes to find Donald after the snap.

-- Rams quarterback Jared Goff is in a similar situation as Trubisky. He must be aware of Bears outside linebacker Khalil Mack, who spearheaded Chicago's ferocious performance last December that included seven quarterback hits, three sacks and four interceptions for the team. Since then when including the playoffs, Goff and the Rams are 9-7 and he's completing 60 percent of his passes with 17 touchdowns, 16 interceptions and 16 fumbles, including seven lost fumbles.

-- After the Bears beat the Rams last season, cornerback Nickell Robey-Coleman had some strong words. "We will not lose against them a second time," he said then. "And I promise that. That’s a guarantee. They’re a great team. They do good things. If we see each other again, we’re going to line it up. If we see them again, it should be a different story."

-- The rematch never occurred, so Sunday will have to do. Some of the Rams remained chapped by the loss to the Bears during Super Bowl week. The Bears were the first team to shut them down offensively during a season in which they scored 30 points or more 13 times. The Patriots then held the Rams to three points in a Super Bowl victory. The Rams have scored 30 points or more three times this season.

-- There are a lot of positive vibes for the Bears coming out of the win over the Lions, no matter how it looked. Trubisky earned compliments from Nagy. "The game that he put together under all the circumstances he was under, so proud of him just stepping up and making plays and playing four great quarters," Nagy said. "He really did. I like that. That’s a growth for us there last week."

-- Trubisky emphasized again how much he likes an up-tempo attack to get in a rhythm. Running back Tarik Cohen agreed. "We’re a team that likes fast breaks, get the ball moving," Cohen said. He used an NBA analogy comparing the Bears to the style of the Golden State Warriors of the past several seasons. "We pass the ball around and get everybody active," he said.

Jeff Joniak is the play-by-play announcer for the Bears broadcasts on WBBM Newsradio 780 & 105.9 FM. Follow him on Twitter @JeffJoniak.