Storylines abound in Bears-Chiefs tilt despite lack of signficance

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With the post-season no longer a possibility, the Chicago Bears enter their home-finale Sunday evening at Soldier Field against the Kansas City Chiefs with little to play for besides pride.

However, wrapped around the Christmas day holiday and the end of the season are several interesting sub-plots which should prove interesting to watch.

For starters, draft day regrets may bubble to the surface when the Bears get a glimpse of the quarterback they passed on, Patrick Mahomes. Mahomes has been nothing short of spectacular while the quarterback the Bears traded up for and chose, Mitch Trubisky, is still trying to establish some consistency finishing his third season. While Trubisky has played better recently, Mahomes production and play has vaulted the Chiefs into a team with deep playoff aspirations.

Secondly, the coaching matchup between Bears head coach Matt Nagy and his mentor, Kansas City’s Andy Reid , should also be fun to watch. Nagy got his start in coaching under Reid in Philadelphia and followed him to Kansas City, where he coordinated the Chiefs offense prior to be named the Bears head coach.

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While Kansas City is headed to the playoffs, it’s been a frustrating season in Chicago. Nagy, who specializes in offense and orchestrated the Bears turnaround in 2018, has struggled to develop Chicago’s offense into the big-play unit and high scoring attack that Reid’s built in KC. A poor ground game, lack of a playmaking tight end, and lackluster offensive line play have all contributed to the Bears lack of scoring punch.

Another familiar face on the Chiefs sideline is Dave Toub, the veteran special teams coach who had success in Chicago as part of Lovie Smith’s staff. Toub, who deserves serious consideration as an NFL head coaching candidate, may have a few tricks up his sleeve to take advantage of an inconsistent Bears special teams unit.

Defensively, defensive tackle Akeem Hicks’ valiant bid to play through a painful elbow injury ended when the club announced he would miss Sunday’s contest.

Paw Prints: QB MITCHELL TRUBISKY passed for 334 yards last week, his 7th career 300-yard game. Has 2+ TD passes in 2 of his past 3 starts at home vs. AFC. Needs 226 pass yards for 2nd consecutive 3,000-yard season. • RB DAVID MONTGOMERY (rookie) has 85+ scrimmage in 2 of his past 3. Aims for his 4th in row vs. AFC with rush TD. Needs 98 scrimmage yards to become 5th Chi. rookie RB with 1,000+ scrimmage yards since 1970. RB TARIK COHEN had 7 catches & 85 scrimmage yards (57 rec., 28 rush) in Week 15. Is 1 of 3 NFC RBs (ALVIN KAMARA & CHRISTIAN MCCAFFREY) with 7+ games (7) with 5+ receptions in 2019. • WR ALLEN ROBINSON had 7 receptions for 125 yards last week, his 3rd 100-yard game of 2019. Aims for his 3rd in row at home with rec. TD. Had 7 catches for 76 yards & TD in his only career game vs. KC (11/6/16 with Jax.

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). Is 1st Chi. WR with 80+ receptions (83) & 1,000+ rec. yards (1,023) since ALSHON JEFFERY (2014). WR ANTHONY MILLER had 9 receptions for 118 yards & TD in Week 15. Has 9+ catches & 100+ rec. yards in 2 of his past 3. Aims for his 3rd in row with TD catch. • LB KHALIL MACK has 5.5 sacks & FF in his past 6 vs. KC. Has 2 sacks, 3 PD & FR in 3 games vs. AFC West in 2019. Is 1 of 2 (T.J. WATT) with 7+ sacks & 5+ FFs in each of past 2 seasons. LB NICK KWIATKOSKI had 3rd sack of season last week. Has PD in 3 of his past 4. CB KYLE FULLER aims for his 5th in row at home with PD. Leads NFL with 55 PD since 2017.

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