NFL Nation: NFL Power Rankings

A weekly examination of the Bears’ ESPN.com Power Ranking:

Preseason: 13 | Last Week: 4 | ESPN.com Power Ranking since 2002

Chicago fell from the top five of ESPN.com’s Power Rankings but remained in the top 10 at No. 9 after Sunday’s 40-32 loss to the Detroit Lions.

Interestingly, the Lions check in at 10th, moving up six spots from 16, while the Green Bay Packers stayed at 12th and the Minnesota Vikings rose from 26th to No. 24 after their 34-27 win over the Pittsburgh Steelers in London.

The Bears rank below the 49ers, Dolphins, Colts and Chiefs, who are eighth, seventh, sixth and fifth, respectively.

Chicago deserves to stay in the top 10. The Bears committed four turnovers, including a fumble returned for a touchdown. With 47 seconds left to play, remarkably, they still held a sliver of hope for tying the game when Robbie Gould lined up for the onside kick.

All but one of ESPN.com’s panelists voted for Chicago to remain in the top 10. The club received two seventh-place votes, one for No. 6, two for No. 10 and one for 12th.

The panelists put the Bears in the correct spot here. They overcame a horrid start, and too many turnovers in difficult circumstances on the road, yet had a chance at the end.
A weekly examination of the Bears’ ESPN.com Power Ranking:

Preseason: 13 | Last Week: 9 | ESPN.com Power Ranking since 2002

The Chicago Bears passed a substantial test internally -- and obviously in the eyes of the public -- Sunday with their 40-23 road victory over Pittsburgh, and the panelists for ESPN.com’s Power Rankings rewarded the club with the No. 4 spot.

Off to their third 3-0 start since 1991, the Bears moved up five spots from ninth, with Seattle, Denver and New Orleans ranking first, second and third, respectively.

Elsewhere in the NFC North, Green Bay fell seven spots to 12th from No. 6, while Detroit moved up from 18th to 16th and Minnesota dropped to 26th from No. 23.

All but one of ESPN.com’s panelists voted for Chicago to occupy a spot in the top five, with two putting in bids for No. 3, two for No. 4, one for No. 5 and one for sixth.

The panelists made the right call in moving up Chicago because it faced a desperate Steelers team in Pittsburgh, and outlasted it in a game closer than the score indicated. Having taken a 17-0 lead in the first quarter, the Bears held off a fierce Steelers rally that saw the game get as close as 27-23 with 10:38 left to play.

Power Rankings: No. 9 Chicago Bears

September, 10, 2013
9/10/13
12:30
PM ET
A weekly examination of the Bears’ ESPN.com Power Ranking:

Preseason: 13 | Last Week: 14 | ESPN.com Power Ranking since 2002

One game in the books and the Chicago Bears earned a spot in the top 10 (No. 9) of ESPN.com’s Power Rankings by virtue of their 24-21 come-from-behind victory over the 10th-ranked Cincinnati Bengals.

The Bears sit just two spots behind the No. 7 Green Bay Packers, which fell 34-28 to the top-ranked San Francisco 49ers.

So while Chicago remains tied for the NFC North lead, with Green Bay deadlocked for last in the division, the Packers are higher in the Power Rankings. The truth, however, is ESPN’s group of panelists put the Bears about right where they need to be in the rankings.

Certainly, the Bears put together a strong performance, but it didn’t come without a few warts (slow start, lack of a strong running game, no pressure from the front four). Coming into the season, the Bears' offense had finished above the bottom 10 in total yards only once in the past 11 years. After the Week 1 victory, Chicago’s offense checks in at No. 20 (323-yard average).

So it appears the arrow is pointing up for the Bears. But undoubtedly for new coach Marc Trestman and his evolving offense, there’s still work to do.

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