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Thayer: Bears Need To Control Game Early

Maurice Jones-Drew

Maurice Jones-Drew (Photo Credit: Getty Images, By: Doug Benc)

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CHICAGO (CBS) — The Chicago Bears hit the road to take on 1-3 Jacksonville on Sunday, but any time teams play on the road, there are plenty of challenges.

The Bears, according to WBBM Bears Radio analyst Tom Thayer, need to control the game early in a hostile environment and take the crowd out of the game, just like they did in Dallas on Monday night.

The defense is also facing one of the better running backs in Maurice Jones-Drew. They need to stop the run early in order to be able to put pressure on the Jags’ quarterback Blaine Gabbert.

LISTEN: Josh Liss With Bears Analyst Tom Thayer

Jones-Drew is “a very determined to do things on his own,” Thayer said. “They key with the Bears is to come out and play run defense. If you don’t stop the running game in Jacksonville, you may not have the right to rush the passer.”

Thayer also said fans shouldn’t worry about the relationship between quarterback Jay Cutler and offensive coordinator Mike Tice. Cutler was visibly annoyed with Tice at one point during the Dallas game.

“There are a lot of emotions you are challenged with, week in and week out,” Thayer said. “[Cutler’s] working with a lot of moving parts.”

With a single camera focused on Cutler’s every move, it’s certain that those emotions will be captured on the sidelines.

Thayer’s prediction? Bears win.