Matt Forte is no Gayle Sayers or Walter Payton, but Forte has accomplished something even those Bears greats never did. Forte is certainly not Marshall Faulk, but once again a pass-catching running back is the engine to a Mike Martz offense.
When no one was looking, the Bears offense tightened up their offensive line and got dangerous. They’ve averaged 28 points-per-game over the last five weeks. Jay Cutler has 16 touchdowns and only seven picks since the team’s bye week.
Martz’s ability to use Forte in a variety of roles has been a key. Consider: Forte is the only Bears player in its long history to record 1,400 yards from scrimmage in his first three years. Forte is just 22 yards away from 1,000 rushing and 13 receiving yards away from 500. If he reaches both those marks Sunday, he’ll join Walter Payton as the only Bears player to pull that off.
Vaughn McClure of the Chicago Tribune notes the Bears are the only team in football to run more than they have thrown in the last eight weeks. Forte’s versatility gives them an edge.
“Matt right now is just, to me, just outrageous the way he’s playing,” Martz said.
Last year’s Super Bowl teams made it that far with outrageous offenses and good enough defenses. Teams like the Patriots, Packers, Eagles, and Saints are hoping to take that same approach this year.
The Bears definitely take the opposite tact, led by a great defense. It’s worth noting, however, the Bears offense has been more than good enough lately.