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Power Rankings Put Bears in NFL's Second 10

Various power rankings are putting the Bears between ninth and 17th best, depending on where your mouse and cursor take you.

A week away from football let the Bears slow their slide or even make up some ground in most NFL power rankings.

The Bears (3-2) remain near the middle of the pack in most polls, although NFL.com and Bleacher Report both had them climb back into the top 10 after a week off before their game Sunday at home with New Orleans (4-1).

They moved up two spots to No. 10 in the Bleacher Report poll. Bleacher Report suggested the Bears have "an identity problem."

"Back in Week 4, it appeared the Bears had figured a few things out," Bleacher Report said. "Even with backup Chase Daniel at quarterback, the Bears made relatively easy work of the rival Minnesota Viking — thanks largely to a defense that looked as dominant as ever. But then the team took a trip across the Atlantic and laid an egg against the Oakland Raiders. The offense came out flat — again. The defense was gashed by rookie tailback Josh Jacobs. And the Bears went into the bye facing more than a few questions about whether this year's squad could match last year's success."

NFL.com has them at No. 9 overall, one behind the Vikings (4-2), a team they beat up on 16-6 Sept. 29 at Soldier Field.

NFL.com suggested some strategic offensive advice regarding Tarik Cohen.

"Bears coach Matt Nagy needs to get Cohen involved," NFL.com said.

The Bears' worst ranking in major polls came in the Sports Illustrated poll, which dropped them out of the top half of the league during their bye week. They fell from 16th to 17th.

"A Vikings win this week and strong starts from the Lions and Packers suddenly raises the stake (for) Sunday's game against the Saints," SI said. "Unfortunately, New Orleans has a similarly great defense and a much better offense than the Bears." 

ESPN put the Bears 16th, dropping three places while inactive.

ESPN's Jeff Dickerson pointed out explosive plays on offense are a great shortcoming.

"The Bears don't have enough of them," Dickerson said. "Their vertical passing attack is limited with Mitchell Trubisky or Chase Daniel at quarterback. The offense has been equally ineffective on the ground. Chicago has gained eight or more rushing yards on just 10 running plays through five games."

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CBSSports.com had the Bears at No. 13, up two spots from last week, but took a shot at their defense rather than their offense.

"They come off the bye looking to generate more on offense, but it was the defense that also had some issues in London. That unit needs to pick it up as well," CBS Sports.com said.

The Associated Press had the Bears moving up one spot to a 15th-place tie with the Philadelphia Eagles, while the Chicago Tribune's power poll has the Bears 15th, one spot behind the Raiders.

"It's an important game for the Bears in the big picture because they're 1 1/2 games behind the Packers and already lost to them at home," the Tribune said.

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