The Bears slipped to 8-8 in Matt Nagy’s second season, and the climb back up the NFC North begins with quarterback intrigue.
Chicago traded for Nick Foles this offseason, and he will battle with quarterback Mitchell Trubisky for the starting job. The Bears still have an elite defense led by Khalil Mack, but they will be up against a challenging schedule that includes the AFC South and NFC South.
The schedule also features the usual battles with the NFC North rivals. Will Nagy lead Chicago back to the top of the division?
Here is a complete breakdown of the Bears’ 2020 schedule, including dates and start times for all 16 games and our early prediction.
Bears schedule 2020
- Home: Detroit, Green Bay, Minnesota, New Orleans, Tampa Bay, N.Y. Giants, Houston, Indianapolis
- Away: Detroit, Green Bay, Minnesota, Carolina, Atlanta, L.A. Rams, Jacksonville, Tennessee
(The Bears’ full schedule will be released Thursday at 8 p.m. ET along with the entire 2020 NFL schedule.)
(For Canadian viewers, each game can be streamed on DAZN.)
Chicago’s home schedule features non-divisional visits from two Hall of Fame quarterbacks in Drew Brees and Tom Brady, and Houston is the other 10-win team on the schedule. The Soldier Field slate also features a visit from Philip Rivers and Indianapolis.
The Rams and Giants are the cross-over opponents as a result of a third-place schedule.
Bears strength of schedule & prediction
Chicago’s opponents had a 129-125-2 record last season, and that .508 winning percentage gives the Bears’ a strength of schedule ranked at No. 13.
The Bears are 11-6 at home and 10-7 on the road the last two seasons under Nagy. Re-establishing that home-field advantage – especially in the elements – will be the key for the Bears in his third year.
Toughest tests: Green Bay and Minnesota were a combined 14-3 at home last season, but the Bears won at Minnesota in a 21-19 victory and had a chance to tie the Packers at Lambeau Field in a 21-13 loss. Those divisional games still carry the most weight.
Outside of the division, the road games at Tennessee and the cross-country trip to Los Angeles to face the Rams won’t be easy.
Biggest breaks: The Saints and Buccaneers are tough ones, too, but at least those are at Soldier Field. The later those games are on the schedule, the better for the Bears.
Carolina, Atlanta and Jacksonville were a combined 8-15 at home last season. Those are games the Bears can win and keep pace in the NFC North race with the Packers and Vikings.
Bottom line: Chicago is 3-5 against AFC teams under Nagy, so it’s about avoiding those slipups against unfamiliar opponents. The defense will keep the Bears in most games. Chicago had just two losses by more than 10 points last season.
The quarterback question will need answered, but a middle-of-the-road-schedule gives the Bears a chance to get back in the mix. It’s about those showdowns with the Packers and Vikings. Nagy is 3-1 against Minnesota, but he’s 1-3 against Green Bay.
Record prediction: 8-8