Khalil Mack

USA Today

Matt Nagy's Crew

This wasn't Chicago beating up the Jets.

November 19, 2018 - 10:38 am

When the NFL flexed the Bears and Vikings into the Sunday Night slot, we were finally getting a look at the Bears against a playoff contender. This wasn't Chicago beating up the Jets. Or the Bears D picking on Nate Peterman. 

Matt Nagy's crew was sitting on top of the NFC North. They were 6-and-3. They had my attention. But they had also gagged away a 20-point lead to Aaron Rodgers. And a 10-point lead to Tom Brady. 

Hell, they got beat by the Brock Lobster.

I said this yesterday morning on CBS. I saw the Bears working. I saw what Khalil Mack and that D were laying down. But before I was going to roll with these dudes, I needed to see them do it against somebody with a pulse. 

And then last night happened. HIT IT, ALVIE!

Sing it, Chicago! 

THAT was an absolute beat down. The only thing that was missing was Samurai Mike, The Sackman Dent, The Fridge and the Funky QB.

Did you see what Khalil Mack was doing to Vikings tackle Riley Reiff? We've seen some absolutely hellacious stiff arms the past couple weeks. Vance McDonald buried Chris Conte. Pitt running back Qadree Ollison talked with me about the truck stick he laid on his way to breaking loose for a 97-yard touchdown. 

But it's time to start a new category for what Khalil Mack did to Riley Reiff. Dude put a 6-foot-6, 310-pound offensive tackle on his back with just his left arm. Coming around the edge, Mack took a grown-ass man and planted him in the Solider Field turf deep enough to plant roots. And it wasn't even close to the best play he made last night. 

While Jon Gruden was celebrating a win that could cost him the first pick of the draft, Khalil Mack was doing Khalil Mack things. Coming off the edge like a terror. Forcing fumbles from Dalvin Cook and recovering them. Rag-dolling Kirk Cousins. Putting Riley Reiff on a Milk Carton. And wrecking the game. 

I know scoring points is the way of the NFL right now. Teams are dropping 40 and 50 like it's not even a thing. But what the Bears did to the Minnesota offense last night was straight-up dominant. Defense like that plays everywhere. And especially in the playoffs. 

What Chicago did to the Vikings last night was scary. Kirk Cousins looked like a dude who just wanted to get the hell out of there. I haven't seen anybody treat that dude so disrespectfully since his old GM spent an entire press conference calling him KURT.

The Bears laid this first half drive chart on a Vikings offense: PUNT, FUMBLE, PUNT, PUNT, PICK. And even when Mitch Trubisky tried to throw the Vikings back into that game last night, the Bears D wouldn't let them. THAT's how you know the D is next level. 

It has been a LONG time since the City of Chicago has had a football team they could get hyped about. Matt Nagy is making everybody forget about John Fox, Marc Trestman and Lovie. It's been six years since they've even had a winning record. The Bears are coming off four-straight double-digit loss seasons. This is a rebuild that was supposed to take a couple years, not a couple months. 

But last night was a statement. The NFL Flexed Chicago into prime time and the Bears flexed harder. This wasn't beating up some nobody. This was a team that won 13 games last year and played for the NFC title. Now they're wondering what the hell just hit them. 

Chicago, I'm no doubting your squad. Not after that. Hell, bears super fan Jeremy Piven even dropped me a DM at halftime asking, “Why are you sleeping on my bears, man.”  I’m not any J.P.  Not anymore. In fact, it's time to get that funky-ass beat back on blast, because the Bears are freaking LEGIT.  And I don’t care who Jon Gruden drafts, trading Khalil Mack, a guy who wanted to be a Raider is still one of the dumbest moves ever.