The Chicago Bears have now played 13 games and before going to a 17-game season, this would be the last quarter of the season, so I'm gonna check in with my 2023 predictions.
Thus my record is 8-5, the opposite of the Bears' Win-Loss record (5-8). Do the Bears still have a chance? Mathematically, sure. Realistically, they need a lot of help. They should have won the Tampa Bay, Broncos, and Saints games, and first meetings with the Vikings and Lions, but didn't.
To make the playoffs, first, the Bears have to Win out the rest of the season. A single loss now essentially eliminates them. So let's assume they win their next 4 games and finish the season 9-8. The next four games are winnable but given how they blew other winnable games, I'm not holding my breath.
Second, they need a bunch of teams to lose at least 2, if not 3 more games.
It's a little too early to come up with scenarios where they make the playoffs. San Francisco is the only team that has clinched a playoff berth, but Dallas and Philadelphia aren't going away. The Rams, Seahawks, and Giants are trying to sneak in and playing very well right now.
There might be a scenario where Detroit implodes and finishes 9 and 8, and I think the Bears would win that tiebreaker? Unfortunately, that would mean the Vikings win the division.
It gets even trickier with the NFC South because the Bears lost to the Saints and Buccaneers, but beat Carolina. They have to win the game against Atlanta (since becoming a fan, the Bears have missed the playoffs twice to Atlanta because of tie-breaker rules).
But here's the thing. Even if they do and have a 9-8 record, they would still miss the playoffs because of tiebreakers because that is who the Bears are. They fail to control their destiny.
Let's assume over the next four games everyone goes 2-2 while the Bears go 4-0. Lions would win the division, Minnesota would get the last wild Card and the Bears would be watching the playoffs from home.