NFL

Buffalo Bills at Chicago Bears Preview

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Chicago Bears host the Buffalo Bills to open the 2014 NFL regular-season and despite having an outstanding offense of season last year and missed the playoffs. The Bears will need to improve on defense if they want to advance to the playoffs this year. Head coach Mark Trestman  is the man behind the Bears explosive offense, but the team will need to focus on defense.

Jay Cutler will lead the Bears offense and has two of the best wide receivers in all of football. Alshon Jeffery and Brandon Marshall each had Pro Bowl seasons, giving Chicago one of the best receiving tandems in the NFL. They totaled 189 receptions for 2,716 yards and 19 touchdowns, and Jeffery ranked second in the league among receivers with 1,526 yards from scrimmage.  if that wasn’t enough the Bears added veteran receiver receiver Santonio Holmes to provide some depth.

“He’s exciting,” Cutler said. “We’ve just got to get him caught up with everything right now. It’s hard coming in where we are offensively and just kind of throwing him into the mix.”

Matt Forte  anchors a solid ground game having gained 1933 yards of total offense for the Bears last year.

On defense Chicago made some moves in the off-season to shore up  a squad that ranked 30th overall in defense allowing 394 yards per game last year.

Chicago has brought in five-time Pro Bowler Jared Allen, versatile LaMarr Houston and Willie Young to improve the line, while Julius Peppers has gone on to Green Bay.

Allen, however, has battled a bruised shoulder, first-round pick Kyle Fuller is nursing an ankle injury and fellow defensive back Chris Conte missed most of the preseason recovering from shoulder surgery before suffering a concussion.

EJ Manuel will lead the Bills offense and have new receiver Sammy Watkins taken fourth overall in the draft  as a bona fide playmaker. Manuel  Needs to prove he is the guy for the position after an inconsistent  rookie campaign.

Bills head coach Doug Maronne  will be watching closely.

“With EJ, obviously we’re looking for him to progress and to keep coming along,” Marrone said. “We’re going to stick with him. I’m going to support him 110 percent. And we’re going to get him better.”

C.J. Spiller and Fred Jackson combined for 1,823 yards and 11 touchdowns on the ground.

After a 6-10 campaign last year the Bills have some weapons.  putting all those together for winning season is quite another challenge.

About James Rhodes

James is an American born sports writer that covers all sports and has a passion for football at every level He began his journalism career then and has been published on numerous sports websites and publications

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