This notion will sound crazy to a lot of football fans, but I think the Bears have the pieces necessary to win the Super Bowl.
And when they open up camp later this week, that should be the goal.
There's every reason to believe this team will be better in year two of the Marc Trestman regime.
Under Trestman's tutelage, the Bears were the highest scoring team in the National Football League. Not one of the best. The very best.
In his 2nd year in Trestman's playbook, Jay Cutler should be better. He's added weight in the off-season, in the hopes of withstanding a few more hits. After a breakout 2nd season by Alshon Jeffery, Cutler now has two pro-bowl caliber receivers to throw to. Add versatile back Matt Forte and tight end Martellus Bennett, who caught 65 passes in his first season in Chicago, and there are no shortage of weapons to suggest that the Bears will continue putting points on the board in bunches.
The problem a year ago was the defense: statistically one of the worst defenses the Bears have ever put on the field. Lovie Smith's departure and Brian Urlacher's retirement certainly factor into that. But so do injuries.
Lance Briggs missed nearly half the season with a fractured shoulder. Charles Tillman missed 8 games with a torn triceps. Those are their two best players, and they're back. The Bears also added five time pro-bowl defensive end Jared Allen to the mix, and drafted defensive players with their first three draft picks.
There's no reason the defense shouldn't be vastly improved.
Then again, there's no guarantee either. If the Bears D can't stay healthy (or the offense for that matter), or Briggs and Tillman start showing their age, then all bets are off.
But if the Bears are healthy, which is always the ultimate variable in the NFL, there's no reason the Chicago Bears shouldn't be contenders this year.