The Chicago Bears are coming off of a 2018 campaign in which they won 12 games and captured the NFC North division title before losing to the Philadelphia Eagles in the Wild Card Round of the playoffs.
The Bears are known for their defense, but their offense is also improving, and as a result, many feel that Chicago is a Super Bowl contender heading into 2019.
Of course, with expectations comes pressure, and Bears fans are tired of losing.
So, here are the three Bears players under the most pressure going into this season.
3. Leonard Floyd
It’s put up or shut up time for Leonard Floyd.
The ninth overall pick of the 2016 NFL Draft, Floyd has been a massive disappointment thus far, as injuries derailed his first couple of seasons in the league, and in 2018, he played his first full 16-game campaign, but tallied just 34 tackles and four sacks.
It’s not that Floyd has been bad, because he hasn’t; he just has not been what the Bears expected when they took him at No. 9 three years ago.
Floyd was fortunate enough to have his fifth-year option for 2020 picked up by Chicago earlier this offseason, so he still has two years remaining on his deal, but he is running out of chances to prove himself in the Windy City.
2. Allen Robinson
Back in 2015, Allen Robinson looked like he was emerging as one of the best wide receivers in the NFL, as he hauled in 80 receptions for 1,400 yards and a league-leading 14 touchdowns during his second season with the Jacksonville Jaguars.
But since then, Robinson has not come close to matching that production, as injuries have seriously hindered him.
A torn ACL limited Robinson to just one game during his final season with the Jaguars in 2017, and during his first year in Chicago in 2018, Robinson missed three contests and battled rib and hip issues.
We know what Robinson can do when he is healthy, and he has the potential to be a No. 1 receiver. But the 26-year-old is going to be relied upon heavily in the Bears offense in 2019, and he needs to deliver.
1. Mitchell Trubisky
The Bears drafted Mitchell Trubisky with the second overall pick in 2017, so, obviously, expectations were high from the get-go.
Trubisky proceeded to have a rather uninspiring rookie year, throwing for 2,193 yards, seven touchdowns and seven interceptions while completing 59.4 percent of his passes over 12 starts.
He showed some improvement during his second season, finishing with 3,223 yards, 24 touchdowns and 12 picks while completing 66.6 percent of his throws and registering a passer rating of 95.4, making the Pro Bowl as a result.
Still, Trubisky is not where many thought he would be at this point, and now, he is facing a whole lot of heat entering 2019 as a result.
The good news is that quarterbacks typically don’t take a big leap between Year 1 and Year 2. It’s usually Year 3 that represents the defining season for young signal-callers, so perhaps this will be Trubisky’s breakout campaign.
But there is no question that Trubisky needs to be more consistent and needs to rely more on his arm than his legs to make plays.