INDIANAPOLIS — The Indianapolis Colts are on a mission to prove they can beat a legitimate NFL team on Sunday as they take on the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field.
The Colts (2-1) have won two straight games against teams that are a combined 0-7, but the Bears (3-0) represent a much different challenge.
Here is everything you need to know before the two sides square off.
— Sunday, Oct. 4, at 4:25 p.m. (EDT). Game flexed to later starting time due to Patriots-Chiefs postponement.
— Chicago, Soldier Field
— TV: CBS-4 — Greg Gumbel (play-by-play), Rich Gannon (color), Jay Feely (sideline)
— To find out what games will be on in your area, check here
— Radio: WFNI 1070-AM The Fan, WLHK 97.1 HANK-FM — Matt Taylor (play-by-play), Rick Venturi (color), Larra Overton (sideline), Bill Brooks (pregame/postgame analyst) | ESPN Radio — Sean Kelley (play-by-play), Ben Hartsock (color)
— Colts lead, 23-19 (1-0 in playoffs). The Colts have won three of the last five matchups dating back to 2004.
— Last game — Week 5, 2016. Colts won, 29-23.
Colts: head coach Frank Reich; offensive coordinator Nick Sirianni; defensive coordinator Matt Eberflus, special teams Bubba Ventrone.
Bears: head coach Matt Nagy; offensive coordinator Bill Lazor; defensive coordinator Chuck Pagano; special teams Chris Tabor.
Colts won vs. New York Jets, 36-7
Bears won @ Atlanta Falcons, 30-26
— OUT: CB T.J. Carrie (hamstring), WR Michael Pittman Jr. (calf)
— QUESTIONABLE: LB Khalil Mack (knee), LB Josh Woods (ankle)
— DOUBTFUL: DB Sherrick McManis (hamstring)
Storylines/Things to Watch
— A New Chicago Offense?: Nick Foles replaces Mitchell Trubisky at quarterback for the Bears. How much of an upgrade will it be, how different will Nagy and Lazor make the offense as a result, and how big of a boost does it give Allen Robinson II and Anthony Miller? At running back, Tarik Cohen was lost for the season to a torn ACL last week, leaving Cordarrelle Patterson as the primary ball carrier behind David Montgomery.
— Receivers Stepping Up?: Over the last two weeks, the Colts have lost wide receivers Parris Campbell (knee) and Michael Pittman Jr. (calf) to injuries, taking away two of the team’s top four receivers. Daurice Fountain, Ashton Dulin, and perhaps rookie Dezmon Patmon will see a boost in usage, but will we see a breakout game from either T.Y. Hilton or Zach Pascal any time soon?
— Is This Defense For Real?: In the last two weeks, the Colts defense has looked like the 1985 edition of this week’s opponent, but it’s been against offenses that rank near the bottom of the league in several categories. The Bears offense, and team as a whole, is expected to be a much bigger challenge. While the visitors may not be scoring touchdowns or racking up safeties, can they continue getting after the quarterback and stifling the opponent?
— Colts IOL Quenton Nelson/Ryan Kelly vs. Bears DL Akiem Hicks: This is a matchup of nasty vs. nasty. Nelson’s style of play needs no explanation, while his running mate at center in Kelly isn’t far behind when it comes to playing with a mean streak. They’ll often face off with Hicks, who also has a knack for playing to the whistle.
— Colts DT DeForest Buckner vs. Bears C Cody Whitehair: Buckner has played like his hair is on fire this season, totaling 15 tackles (three for loss), 1.5 sacks, and a safety in three games. He has a tough challenge ahead of him in Whitehair, one of the NFL’s top centers.
— Colts CB Xavier Rhodes vs. Bears WR Allen Robinson II: Rhodes is playing like the former All-Pro version of himself as of late, but he hasn’t had to face someone like Robinson yet this year. In two matchups against Robinson while Rhodes was with the Minnesota Vikings, Rhodes allowed receptions on three-of-four targets for 36 yards (12.0 avg.) with just five yards after the catch allowed and one pass breakup.
— Head referee: Craig Wrolstad (18 years). Click here to see all referee assignments for Week 4.
— Favorite: Colts (-3.0)
— Over/Under: 43.0
2020 Season Leaders
— Passing: QB Philip Rivers (794 yards)
— Rushing: RB Jonathan Taylor (182 yards)
— Receiving: TE Mo Alie-Cox (181 yards)
— Touchdowns: RB Nyheim Hines, RB Jonathan Taylor (2)
— Tackles: LB Darius Leonard (26)
— Sacks: DE Justin Houston (2.5)
— Interceptions: CB T.J. Carrie, CB Xavier Rhodes (2)
— Passing: QB Mitchell Trubisky (560 yards)
— Rushing: RB David Montgomery (191 yards)
— Receiving: WR Allen Robinson II (230 yards)
— Touchdowns: TE Jimmy Graham (3)
— Tackles: S Eddie Jackson, LB Roquan Smith (20)
— Sacks: DL Akiem Hicks (3.5)
— Interceptions: S Deon Bush, CB Kyle Fuller, S Tashaun Gipson Sr. (1)
Comparing 2020 Stats
— Total offense: 12th (384.0 YPG)
— Scoring: 13th (28.0 PPG)
— Passing offense: 10th (264.7 YPG)
— Sacks allowed: Tied-3rd (3)
— Rushing offense: 15th (119.3 YPG)
— Third down offense: 32nd (30.3%)
— Red zone offense: 23rd (54.6%)
— Total defense: 1st (225.3 YPG)
— Scoring defense: 1st (15.0 PPG)
— Passing defense: 1st (132.0 YPG)
— Sacks: 8th (9)
— Rushing defense: 4th (93.3YPG)
— Third down defense: 3rd (32.3%)
— Red zone defense: Tied-18th (66.7%)
— Time of possession: 2nd (33:58)
— Turnover differential: Tied-5ht (+3)
— Total offense: 17th (368.0 YPG)
— Scoring: 20th (24.7 PPG)
— Passing offense: 23rd (230.0 YPG)
— Sacks allowed: Tied-17th (7)
— Rushing offense: 11th (138.0 YPG)
— Third down offense: 29th (35.7%)
— Red zone offense: Tied-25th (50.0%)
— Total defense: 15th (364.0 YPG)
— Scoring defense: 9th (20.7 PPG)
— Passing defense: 17th (245.0 YPG)
— Sacks: Tied-13th (7)
— Rushing defense: 17th (119.0 YPG)
— Third down defense: 2nd (31.0%)
— Red zone defense: 3rd (41.7%)
— Time of possession: 6th (32:48)
— Turnover differential: Tied-19th (0)
— Colts quarterback Philip Rivers needs 20 pass completions to become just the fifth player in NFL history to hit 5,000 in his career. Rivers needs one game with 400-plus passing yards to tie Ben Roethlisberger (12) for the fourth-most such games in NFL history.
— Colts running back Nyheim Hines needs eight receptions to tie Joe Washington (127) for the third-most receptions by a Colts running back in their first three seasons in the NFL, which would also tie Washington for the 10th-most receptions by a Colts overall player in their first three seasons.
— Hilton needs one TD to pass Dallas Clark (46) for the 11th-most TDs in franchise history, and to tie Clark for the sixth-most receiving TDs. Hilton also needs one game with 10-plus receptions to pass Don McCauley, Lydell Mitchell, Anthony Johnson, Washington, and Clark (3) for the third-most such games in franchise history.
— Colts tight end Jack Doyle needs one TD to pass Ken Dilger (18) and tie Tom Mitchell and Dwayne Allen (19) for the fourth-most TDs by a tight end in franchise history.
— Colts punter Rigoberto Sanchez needs three punts inside the 20-yard line to pass Chris Gardocki (80) for the fourth-most in franchise history. Sanchez needs one game with a 50.0-plus punting average to pass Gardocki (four) for the fifth-most such games in franchise history
— The Colts made the following roster moves this week: signed DE Ron’Dell Carter to the 53-man roster off of the Dallas Cowboys practice squad; signed WR Krishawn Hogan to the practice squad; released QB Chad Kelly from the practice squad.
Catch Before The Game
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(Jake Arthur has covered the NFL and the Indianapolis Colts for nearly a decade and is a contributor for the team's official website, Colts.com. He’s on Twitter and Facebook @JakeArthurNFL, and his email is email@example.com.)