NFC North Fantasy Focus: Chicago Bears

by Michael Drahota | Posted on Tuesday, August 19th, 2014 | 0

Yesterday (Mon., August 18, 2014), TSM Plug kicked off a multi-part series dissecting the fantasy relevance of each National Football League (NFL) team by division, starting with the supercharged Green Bay Packers of the NFC North.

While the Pack is poised to blow up  stat sheets in 2014, their nearby division rival Chicago Bears aren’t far behind with a talented stable of their own.

Let’s take a look at how the Monsters of the Midway stack up in terms of fantasy relevance.


At the tops of the Bears’ list sits Pro Bowl running back (RB) Matt Forte. He put up insane numbers in 2013, rushing for 1,339 yards and nine touchdowns while adding 74 catches for 594 and three more scores. Currently being drafted as the 5th pick in Yahoo standard leagues, you’ll have to be fortunate enough to draft early to enlist the Bears’ star RB on your team.

If you do and he stays healthy all year, expect a huge turnout in head coach Marc Trestman’s high-volume attack. Forte even earns a higher rating if your league employs a point per reception (PPR) scoring format.


Forte is just the lead man on a team full of high-flying stars. When the Bears take to the air, they arguably boast the league’s most potent wide receiver (WR) duo in veteran Brandon Marshall and breakout star Alshon Jeffery.

Possessing extreme chemistry with Bears quarterback (QB) Jay Cutler, Marshall is perennially among the top receivers in the game, and that should be no different this year. He’s not cheap at his current Average Draft Position (ADP) of 15, but he should be a lock for well over 1,000 yards and double-digit touchdowns.

The only dynamic that may dip into his stats is the emergence of Jeffery, the former South Carolina star who exploded with 1,421 yards and seven scores in 2013. His penchant for highlights reel catches has him at the top of many fantasy players’ WR lists for 2014, and his current ADP of 23 reflects that.

The Bears’ elite wideouts aren’t cheap, but they do produce, and they do it consistently. With the offense set to break out even more in 2014, don’t hesitate to draft either Marshall or Jeffery in any format.


Bears QB Jay Cutler has never played a full 16-game season in a Bears uniform, making him one of the most maddening QBs to own on your fantasy team. But he may have the best arsenal of weapons in the league, and he’s definitely in the right situation with renowned “quarterback whisperer” Trestman as his head coach.

Cutler is also a ridiculous bargain at his current ADP of 99. If you choose to forego drafting a QB early (and you probably should), Cutler could be a sneaky good pickup that propels you onto fantasy glory. Just be sure to draft another reliable QB in case he gets hurt at some point.

The team’s starting tight end (TE) Martellus Bennett had a decent 2013. He’s a big, physical TE with a knack for making tough catches, and he could put up big numbers this year. But there are only so many balls to go around, meaning Bennett could remain a fourth option. Still, the upside is there, so draft him in later rounds if you’re choosing to focus on other positions aside from TE.

The Bears defense and special teams was among the NFL’s worse last year, ending a long run as a reliably high scoring unit. They added some key cogs in defensive end (DE) Jared Allen and rookie cornerback Kyle Fuller, but they were still the worst defense against the run last year.

They’re going to have to prove that was a fluke on the field, and in the scoring-heavy NFC north, that’s no easy task.

You could do better than the Bears’ D/ST at this point, but keep an eye on them as a potential waiver wire pickup later in the year if they can turn things around.

About the Author

Both an avid NFL fan and analyst, I’ve been following professional football since the late 1980s. I’m also an avid fantasy football player with several league victories under my belt. Check out my NFL articles on TSM for the latest NFL news, highlights, predictions, and more.

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