The Chicago Bears continue the offseason as they prepare for the 2017 NFL Draft, beginning on April 27th.
But before the Bears draft what they hope are future NFL stars, they found out their schedule for the 2017 season.
The NFL released the full schedule for the upcoming season on April 20th and it looks like a challenging one for the Bears. They will open up against the defending NFC champion Atlanta Falcons and end their season once again in Minnesota.
Sandwiched in between those are 14 other games, including 2 primetime games on national television. Despite a 3-13 record last season, the Bears continue to be a draw for the national audience.
Let’s take a look at complete schedule with some notes on each matchup.
Week 1: vs. Atlanta Falcons, noon (CT)
This is the second time in the last 7 seasons the Bears will host the Falcons in the season opener at Soldier Field. In 2011, Chicago beat Atlanta 30-12 to open the year. It will likely be the first start in Chicago for quarterback Mike Glennon. The former Buccaneers quarterback is familiar with the Falcons. In four career games against the Falcons, Glennon hasn’t thrown an interception and has six touchdown passes.
Week 2: at Tampa Bay, noon
Chicago makes a return trip to Tampa Bay with their new quarterback. The former Buccaneers quarterback is playing against his former team for the first time.
Week 3: vs. Pittsburgh, noon
These two teams meet every four years due to the NFL’s scheduling rotation but lately, the Bears have got the best of the 2017 AFC runner up. Chicago is on a two-game win streak against Pittsburgh winning 17-14 in 2009 and 40-23 in 2013.
Week 4: at Green Bay, 7:25 p.m.
For the seventh-straight season, the Bears are playing a primetime game at Lambeau Field in Green Bay. In 2015 and 2016, the Bears played a Thursday night game in Green Bay. Their combined record against the Packers on the road the last six seasons is 2-4.
Week 5: vs. Minnesota, 7:30 p.m.
Chicago and Minnesota meet on Monday Night Football at Soldier Field for the second-straight season. In 2016 the Bears dominated, winning the game 20-10 as rookie Jordan Howard rushed for 153 yards.
Week 6: at Baltimore, noon
The Bears and Baltimore Ravens have met a total of five times with Chicago leading the series 3-2. But the Bears have never won in Baltimore against the Ravens, going 0-2 in their only two games.
Week 7: vs. Carolina, noon
Former Bears defensive coordinator Ron Rivera brings the Panthers into town in Week 7. Since being named the head coach, Rivera is 1-2 against his former team and has lost both meetings at Soldier Field by a combined 6 points.
Week 8: at New Orleans, noon
The Bears have had their struggles on the road against the New Orleans Saints. Chicago has lost its last four games at the Mercedes-Benz Super Dome dating back to 1991. In 2005, the Bears beat the Saints on the road but the game took place in Baton Rouge due to Hurricane Katrina. Overall, the Bears have lost three in a row to New Orleans including home games in 2013 and 2014.
Week 9: BYE
Chicago’s bye week comes in Week 9, the same week as the 2016 season. Head coach John Fox is 10-5 in games played after the bye week but is 0-2 with the Bears after losing to Minnesota in 2015 and Tampa Bay in 2016.
Week 10: vs. Green Bay, noon
Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers is at his best when he plays his NFC North divisional rival, especially on the road. Rodgers is 8-2 in his career at Soldier Field and has won seven straight dating back to 2011. In those games, Rodgers has thrown 18 touchdowns to just 7 interceptions. Take away the NFC Championship Game in 2011 and Rodgers has just 5 interceptions in Chicago during the regular season.
Week 11: vs. Detroit, noon
The Bears have lost 7-of-8 to the Detroit Lions dating back to 2013. In Week 4 of the 2016 season, the Bears ended their six-game losing streak to the Lions. Defensive backs Jacoby Glenn and Deiondre Hall picked off Matthew Stafford and recorded the first interceptions of their careers.
Week 12: at Philadelphia, noon
Chicago will see a familiar face in Week 12 when they travel to Philadelphia to take on the Eagles. Wide receiver Alshon Jeffery will play against the team that drafted him for the first time in his career. Jeffery signed a one-year deal with Philadelphia in the offseason after finishing with 304 receptions for 4,549 yards and 26 touchdowns in 63 career games with the Bears. His 4,549 receiving yards are third-most in franchise history.
Week 13: vs. San Francisco, noon
For the third-straight season, the Bears will host the San Francisco 49ers at Soldier Field. The teams have split the previous two meetings but the last one was ugly. The Bears held the 49ers to just 6 net passing yards and recorded 6 sacks in one of their best performances of the season.
Week 14: at Cincinnati, noon
Chicago travels to Cincinnati to take on the Bengals and quarterback Andy Dalton. In four games against the NFC North, Dalton is 3-1 with 11 touchdowns. His only loss came to the Bears at Soldier Field in Week 1 of the 2013 season.
Week 15: at Detroit (Saturday), 3:30 p.m.
The second meeting between Detroit and Chicago takes place at Ford Field and will be broadcasted on a special NFL Network Saturday primetime slot. Last season Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford engineered an NFL-record eight fourth quarter comebacks. One of those was against the Bears in Week 14 as the Lions won 20-17.
Week 16: vs. Cleveland, noon
This game has the potential to have a significant impact on 2018 NFL Draft position for both teams. The two finished with a combined record of 4-28 in 2016 and it’s very possible both draft rookie quarterbacks in the 2017 NFL Draft. Chicago has won 3-of-4 meetings between the two teams since the Browns returned to the NFL in 1999 including both games at Soldier Field.
Week 17: at Minnesota, noon
For the second-straight year the Bears will end their regular season in Minnesota. The Bears have lost four straight in Minnesota dating back to the 2012 season and are 0-1 in the new U.S. Bank Stadium. Chicago has lost 4 of the last 5 meetings overall between the two teams.