What are the Chicago Bears' players and coaches talking about ahead of Sunday's Week 17 matchup against the Detroit Lions at Ford Field? Let's find out:
1. Bears quarterback Justin Fields left last week's 35-13 loss to Buffalo late in the fourth quarter after getting his foot stepped on, but Bears head coach Matt Eberflus said Fields is good to go this week against Detroit.
"Like I said after the game, he got stepped on," Eberflus told Chicago reporters this week. "He's good to go. He's healthy, he's ready to go for this week."
Fields rushed for 147 yards and two touchdowns and threw a couple scores in Detroit's 31-30 win over the Bears Week 10.
2. Chicago is 3-12 on the year and have lost nine straight games, but Eberflus said these last two weeks are really important for his young team to continue to learn how to finish games. The Bears have lost a lot of one-score contests this season. Even last week's loss to Buffalo was a 21-13 game late into the fourth quarter. Much like this young Lions team had to learn how to finish after their 1-6 start, Eberflus said the same applies for the Bears to end the year.
"We want to improve," he said. "We want to see where we are. These last two games matter. They're division opponents to us very important to our football team to see the competition, to see guys compete against our division.
"I would see value in that because we have to learn how to finish. (Saturday against the Bills) ... it was fourth quarter, eight minutes to go, it was 21-13, right? We got the ball and we've got to learn how to finish."
3. What did Buffalo do so well to stop Fields and the Bears' No. 1 ranked rushing offense? Chicago had just 80 rushing yards in that loss. The Bills held Fields to just 11 yards on the ground.
"The biggest thing I saw was the mesh charge," left tackle Braxton Jones said. "Their defensive ends slanting inside and bringing the backer over the top. But then they're blitzing off that as well. That was the biggest thing I saw."
Eberflus said Buffalo also did a nice job spying Fields with defensive linemen, linebackers and even safeties at points in the contest.
Defensive coordinator Aaron Glenn and the Lions will no doubt take a close look at the Buffalo game film from last week and see if they can apply anything into their preparations for Sunday.
Detroit is coming off their worst defensive performance of the season against Carolina, allowing the Panthers to run for 320 yards (7.4 average) and three touchdowns in a loss.
4. Speaking of Jones, the rookie left tackle was asked to evaluate his play this season, and he said like all rookies it's been up and down. He's allowed six sacks on the year and his 37 total pressures rank in the top 10 among all tackles. He said the one area he's got to be much better at is defending the bull rush. The Lions have a few really good bull rushers in Aidan Hutchinson, Romeo Okwara and John Cominsky. It's something to look out for on Sunday.
Hutchinson in particular had a really good game Week 10 in the first game against Chicago. Hutchinson had eight tackles, a sack and a tackle for loss. He played a big part in cornerback Jeff Okudah's pick six in that contest.
5. The Bears' defense is allowing 151.2 rushing yards per game on average, which ranks 30th in the NFL. Maybe this is the week Detroit's run game can get right after struggling to have any real consistency in over a month.
"We got to be better on the second level and first level of fitting those runs up," Bears linebacker Nicholas Morrow told chicagobears.com of their run defense.
Buffalo rushed for 254 yards (8.2 average) and three touchdowns against Chicago last week.
6. Pretty crazy stat from Kevin Fishbain, who covers the Bears for The Athletic. Bears defensive end Trevis Gipson recorded the first quarterback hit by a Bears defensive lineman in six weeks Saturday against Buffalo. The 18.0 sacks for Chicago on the year are the fewest in the NFL. Safety Jaquan Brisker leads the team with 4.0.
Detroit's 21 sacks allowed on the season are the second fewest behind only Tampa Bay (19). That's a huge advantage for the Lions heading into Sunday.