The New Orleans Saints were able to get back to .500 on the season with a 38-27 win last Sunday against Gardner Minshew and the Indianapolis Colts. Derek Carr and the Black and Gold offense put up over 500 yards from scrimmage with a balance of running and throwing the ball.
This week, New Orleans will be back in the Caesars Superdome to host the Chicago Bears, who are 2-6 on the season. The Saints have had the Bears’ number as of late as their last loss coming in 2008 when Robbie Gould kicked a 35-yard field goal to win it in overtime for Chicago 27-24. Then, the last time the Black and Gold lost at home to the Bears was in 2005 20-17.
In this 2023 matchup, Chicago will be down a couple of players in the secondary and might be without their starting quarterback for the third straight game.
RUNNING THE FOOTBALL
We’ve seen the offense of the Saints be able to pass the ball but it’s been a different story when it comes to running the football. New Orleans ranks 20th in the league in rushing yards per game at 106. While Chicago’s defense is ranked third in rushing yards given up per game at 78.8.
A big key for the Saints is to get Taysom Hill involved in the run game. New Orleans is 17-1 when Hill carries the ball at least seven times in a game. The one loss came in 2021 to the Dallas Cowboys when Hill was starting at quarterback and completed less than 50% of his passes.
Rookie Kendre Miller maybe not be about to play after getting sick late in the week. However, Alvin Kamara and Jamaal Williams will be other options for offensive coordinator Pete Carmichael and quarterback Derek Carr to go to in the contest.
UNCERTAINTY AT QB
Bears starting quarterback Justin Field has missed the last two games due to a thumb injury on his throwing hand.
In his place, rookie Tyson Bagent won his first NFL start against the Las Vegas Raiders where he completed 21 out of 29 passes for 162 yards and a touchdown as Chicago came out on top 30-12. Last game was a different story as they lost to the Los Angeles Chargers 30-13 and Bagent hit on 25 out of 36 passes for 232 yards but threw two interceptions.
If Fields can’t suit up, New Orleans’ defense has a chance to overwhelm Bagent as they are ranked fifth in total yards allowed at 296.4 and ninth in points per game allowed at 19.3. The Saints have also sacked opposing quarterbacks 15 times while that Chicago offensive line has given 27 sacks.
The Saints not only have won their last five matchups against the Bears, they’ve won the last seven, including a 21-9 victory in the Wildcard round of the 2021 playoffs.
The closest Chicago came to beating New Orleans recently was in 2020 when they lost at home in overtime 26-23.
If the Saints want to extend the win streak against the Bears to eight they’ll want to put plenty of pressure on the rookie quarterback making his third start and not settle for field goals like they’ve done for a majority of the season.
SERIES RECORD: Saints lead 18-15
Last 5 meetings:
2021: NO 21 – CHI 9
2020: NO 26 – CHI 23
2019: NO 36 – CHI 25
2017: NO 20 – CHI 12
2014: NO 31 – CHI 15
Derek Carr: 182-282, 1910 yards, 8 TD, 4 INT
Alvin Kamara: 86 carries, 320 yards, 2 TD
Chris Olave: 44 catches, 517 yards, 1 TD
Carl Granderson: 5.5 sacks
Demario Davis: 54 tackles (32 solo)
Paulson Adebo: 2 INT
Blake Grupe: 17-of-21 field goals, Long of 54
Justin Fields: 100-162, 1201 yards, 11 TD, 6 INT
Khalil Herbert: 51 carries, 272 yards
DJ Moore: 44 catches, 691 yards, 5 TD
T.J. Edwards/Yannick Ngakoue: 2 sacks
T.J. Edwards: 85 tackles (47 solo)
Jaylon Johnson: 2 INT
Cairo Santos: 11-of-11 field goals, Long of 54
Ty Summers, LB, Concussion/Hamstring, Out
Lynn Bowden, WR, Illness,
Michael Thomas, WR, Rest, Probable
Andrus Peat, OL, Ankle, Probable
Taysom Hill, QB, Hip, Probable
James Hurst, OL, Ankle, Probable
Demario Davis, LB, Knee, Questionable
Malcolm Roach, DL, Illness, Questionable
Kendre Miller, RB, Illness, Questionable
Justin Fields, QB, Right Thumb, Doubtful
Nate Davis, OG, Ankle, Out
Terrell Smith, CB, Illness, Out
Jaquan Brisker, S, Concussion, Out
Tremaine Edmunds, LB, Knee, Out
Braxton Jones, OL, Neck, Questionable
Lucas Patrick, OL, Back, Probable
Eddie Jackson, S, Foot, Probable
Mercedes Lewis, TE, Rest, Probable
Larry Borom, T, NIR-Person Matter, Probable
The matchup between the New Orleans Saints and Chicago Bears will be played on Sunday, November 5th. Kickoff in the Caesars Superdome is scheduled at noon.