Chicago Bears schedule takeaways:
- The Bears will face the Packers in Week 4 (@ Chicago) and Week 14 (@ Green Bay). Since 2010, the Packers own a 19-4 record in head-to-head matchups with Chicago.
- Chicago has the third hardest schedule in 2021, including a grueling stretch from Week 6-Week 1 (Packers, Buccaneers, 49ers, Steelers, Ravens).
The Chicago Bears schedule for the 2021 NFL season is out and the fan base is excited to finally see a franchise quarterback. But while Justin Fields is poised to give this team something it hasn’t had in years, Chicago could run into some hurdles this fall.
There’s a lot at stake for this organization. Even after landing a potential franchise quarterback, general manager Ryan Pace and head coach Matt Nagy will have their jobs on the line this season. If Chicago doesn’t reach the playoffs, a regime change is almost inevitable.
Bears roster outlook:
All our predictions are based on the Bears keeping and starting these key players:
- QB: Andy Dalton
- RB: David Montgomery, Tarik Cohen
- WR: Allen Robinson, Darnell Mooney, Anthony Miller, Marquise Goodwin, Dazz Newsome
- TE: Cole Kmet, Jimmy Graham
- Defense: No. 14 in our NFL defense rankings
Let’s dive into our game-by-game predictions for the Bears’ 2021 season.
Chicago Bears 2021 preseason schedule
|Saturday, Aug. 14||vs. Miami Dolphins||1:00 PM||FOX 32|
|Saturday, Aug. 21||vs. Buffalo Bills||1:00 PM||FOX 32|
|Saturday, Aug. 28||@ Tennessee Titans||7:00 PM||FOX 32|
This season the NFL is lowering the amount of preseason games to three per team, and instead expanding the regular season to 17 games, rather than the traditional 16 games.
Chicago Bears schedule predictions
Week 1 – @ Los Angeles Rams
|Sunday, Sept. 12||8:20 PM||NBC|
- Spread: Rams -7 (via DraftKings)
- Moneyline: Rams -295, Bears +230
- Over/Under: 45
Andy Dalton is expected to open the season as the Bears’ starting quarterback and that’s concerning. He’s a great backup and a serviceable fill-in option, but he brings the ceiling of Chicago’s offense down significantly. Facing one of the best defenses in the NFL, the Bears get taken out.
- Week 1 prediction: Rams 31, Bears 20
Week 2 – vs. Cincinnati Bengals
|Sunday, Sept. 19||1 PM||FOX|
Cincinnati’s rebuild is going to take several years and it frankly wouldn’t be a huge surprise if the Bears tear things down this winter and immediately build a better foundation than the Bengals. Chicago will take care of business in this matchup, with Dalton getting some revenge against his former team.
- Week 2 prediction: prediction: Bears 31, Bengals 24
Week 3 – @ Cleveland Browns
|Sunday, Sept. 26||1 PM||FOX|
The Cleveland Browns have a legitimate shot to reach the Super Bowl this year, that’s how good this team is on both sides of the ball. Even if Baker Mayfield struggles against Chicago’s front seven, the Browns have the running game and defense to take over this contest.
- Week 3 prediction: Browns 35, Bears 20
Week 4 – vs. Detroit Lions
|Sunday, Oct. 3||1 PM||FOX|
There will come a time, maybe three years from now, when the Detroit Lions are a legitimate NFC North threat. But this roster is being rebuilt from the ground up and that’s something Chicago can take advantage of, even with Dalton under center and its defense regressing.
- Week 4 prediction: Bears 28, Lions 17
Week 5 – @ Las Vegas Raiders
|Sun, Oct. 10||4:05 PM||CBS|
Once the Bears landed their franchise quarterback, they traded up to draft an offensive lineman. Compare that to the Raiders, who tore apart the very offensive line that protected Derek Carr and helped him become a Pro Bowl quarterback.
- Week 5 prediction: Bears 24, Raiders 21
Week 6 – vs. Green Bay Packers
|Sun, Oct. 17||1 PM||FOX|
It looks increasingly likely that Aaron Rodgers will play for the Packers in 2021. That sound you heard is the city of Chicago weeping. Even at Soldier Field, the Bears have very little shot at containing the Packers’ offense. Maybe we see a few snaps from Fields in this game, but Dalton at quarterback is a recipe for a loss.
- Week 6 prediction: Packers 31, Bears 27
Week 7 – @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers
|Sun, Oct. 24||4:25 PM||CBS|
If the Bears have little hope against Green Bay, it’s a wrap on their trip to Tampa Bay. Tom Brady will slice this secondary to pieces and Chicago’s offense will likely struggle to move the football into scoring range before the second half.
- Week 7 prediction: Buccaneers 38, Bears 17
Week 8 – vs. San Francisco 49ers
|Sun, Oct. 31||1 PM||FOX|
If we get a Trey Lance vs. Justin Fields matchup, it becomes must-see television. Naturally, this game would be a lot more difficult for one rookie than the other. Likewise, first-year defensive coordinator Sean Desai will be taken to school by Kyle Shanahan.
Week 8 prediction: 49ers 24, Bears 14
Week 9 – @ Pittsburgh Steelers
|Mon, Nov. 8||8:15||ESPN|
Many expect the Pittsburgh Steelers to remain an AFC power this season, count me out on this franchise. This is an excellent opportunity for Chicago’s front seven, namely Khalil Mack, to terrorize Ben Roethlisberger. Pair that with a strong showing from Allen Robinson and it’s a Bears’ victory.
- Week 9 prediction: Bears 17, Steelers 13
Week 10 – BYE
Week 11 – vs. Baltimore Ravens
|Sun, Nov. 21||1 PM||CBS|
If the Bears were only facing Lamar Jackson, they might have a shot in this game. But NFL defenses don’t just have to worry about Jackson’s legs torching them on Sunday. Now, with Sammy Watkins and Rashod Bateman on board, Baltimore’s offense will be ridiculous. This might be Fields’ first NFL start, coming off the bye, but it will be rough against the Ravens’ blitz-heavy defense.
- Week 11 prediction: Ravens 27, Bears 17
Week 12 – @ Detroit Lions
|Thu., Nov. 25||12:30 PM||FOX|
A short week with travel isn’t ideal, but the beauty of an opponent rebuilding is matchups like this are much easier. As everyone sits down for a Thanksgiving lunch, Fields can slice up Detroit’s defense and serve up touchdowns to multiple wide receivers.
- Week 12 prediction: Bears 30, Lions 21
Week 13 – vs. Arizona Cardinals
|Sun, Dec. 5||1 PM||FOX|
The Bears don’t have the cornerbacks to contain Rondale Moore, DeAndre Hopkins and AJ Green. On the other side of the ball, it’s difficult to imagine Chicago’s offensive tackles stopping J.J. Watt and Chandler Jones. Even at home, this matchup just doesn’t work in the Bears’ favor.
- Week 13 prediction: Cardinals 31, Bears 24
Week 14 – @ Green Bay Packers
The Bears have won twice at Lambeau Field since 2008. We might see Chicago take control of this rivalry in 2022, when Rodgers is likely gone and Fields is the best quarterback in the NFC North. As things currently stand, another loss on the Bears schedule.
- Week 14 prediction: Packers 28, Bears 20
Week 15 – vs. Minnesota Vikings
|Mon, Dec. 20||8:15||ESPN|
Kirk Cousins isn’t exactly made for Monday Night Football. The big stage and a road matchup against a defense that should grow more comfortable in a new system lead to predictable results. These late-season wins will provide momentum for Fields and Co. to build on heading into 2022.
- Week 15 prediction: Bears 17, Vikings 14
Week 16 – @ Seattle Seahawks
|Sun, Dec. 26||4:05 PM||FOX|
Opponents will long for that 2020 season when Lumen Field didn’t allow fans. The “12th Man” will be back in Seattle this year, creating the kind of hostile environment that Fields must deal with. Russell Wilson is going to cook in this meeting, showing the Bears what they missed out on.
- Week 16 prediction: Seahawks 34, Bears 24
Week 17 – vs. New York Giants
|Sun, Jan. 2||1 PM||CBS|
The Giants might live to regret passing on Fields. New York boasts the personnel to win the NFC East, but a turnover-prone quarterback is holding this team back. While the Giants’ defense might be too much to overcome, this will be a great chance for Fields to show Joe Judge what he missed out on.
- Week 17 prediction: Giants 20, Bears 17
Week 18 – @ Minnesota Vikings
|Sun, June 9||1 PM||FOX|
Beating a divisional opponent twice in one season isn’t easy, especially when they have great coaching and an elite running back. This will be a bitter end to a disappointing Bears’ season, but it will be the final nail in Matt Nagy’s coffin and a new regime leads to a brighter future.
- Week 18 prediction: Vikings 23, Bears 17