Polling Place: Are the Bears in better shape offensively or defensively to take on the Saints?

SHARE Polling Place: Are the Bears in better shape offensively or defensively to take on the Saints?
New Orleans Saints v Chicago Bears

How will David Montgomery and the rest of the Bears offense fare against the heavily favored Saints?

Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

Since joining the Bears, Mitch Trubisky has completed 1,010 passes. Stop the presses, right? No, by itself it isn’t much of a big deal at all.

Relatively speaking, though, it’s a huge number. Only two quarterbacks ever — Jay Cutler and Jim Harbaugh — completed more passes with the Bears. Already, Trubisky, despite his many flaws and failings, is exactly halfway to leader Cutler’s 2,020.

And that’s kind of a long way to say: They don’t call ’em the Monsters of the Midway because of their offense.

As long as Bears have roamed the gridiron, defense has been their calling card. Well, not counting those seasons — there have been a heaping handful — when a huge welcome mat sat in front of their end zone. Typically, though, Bears defenses have held down the fort while the team’s offenses were off doing who-knows-what.

In this week’s “Polling Place” — your home for Sun-Times sports polls on Twitter — we asked respondents if they feel better about the Bears’ struggling defense or their not-so-terrible-after-all offense heading into Sunday’s playoff game in New Orleans.

“Fifty plus years as a Bears fan for me,” @blackhawkpat commented, “and it’s the first time I have more confidence in the offense than the defense.”

There’s a lot of that feeling going around, even though Trubisky, David Montgomery, Allen Robinson et al. will have their hands full with a Saints defense that excels at just about everything. Are Khalil Mack and Akiem Hicks going to rise to this challenge? Will Roquan Smith be able to go? Are they at least a decent match for Drew Brees, Alvin Kamara and company?

On to the polls:

Poll No. 1: Which side of the ball are you more confident in for the Bears on Sunday in New Orleans?

Upshot: It’s a close call, and probably more close-in-a-bad-way than close-in-a-good-way. After all, the Saints outscore the Bears by right around a touchdown per game and give up fewer points, too. “This crap offense will be facing one of the best defenses in the league,” @popsofone wrote. “The answer is Bears defense by default (even though it isn’t great either).” In this question, we used “confident” loosely.

Poll No. 2: If Mitch Trubisky plays poorly, should Matt Nagy turn to backup Nick Foles?

Upshot: Foles was unable to get the job done over the seven games he started this season, but there has to be a part of each of us that wonders if he could recreate some playoff magic three years after leading the Eagles to Super Bowl glory. If Bad Mitch puts the Bears into a hole, Nagy will have a big decision to make.

Poll No. 3: What’s your prediction?

Upshot: “Bears by two scores,” wrote @ChiTownSpurs, clearly the happiest person — and perhaps the worst prognosticator — this side of the Mississippi. Three-fourths of our respondents, though, have the Saints marching on to the next round, and more than half are detecting the wafting stench of a blowout in the air. Maybe next year?

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