Wondering about a player, a past game or another issue involving the Bears? Senior writer Larry Mayer answers a variety of questions from fans on ChicagoBears.com.
Which teams have multiple first-round picks in next year's draft?
As it stands now, four teams have two first-round picks in the 2023 NFL Draft: The Eagles have their own and the Saints' choice. The Lions have their own and the Rams' selection. The Seahawks have their own and the Broncos' pick. And the Texans have their own and the Browns' choice.
With four teams with four wins and the Bears with three wins, which teams would jump the Bears in the draft if they have the same record after the season is over?
The Bears likely will lose the tiebreaker with any team that finishes with the same record at the end of the season. That's because the tiebreaker is decided by strength of schedule and the Bears have faced the most difficult schedule of any NFL team, with their opponents having a .571 winning percentage. And that's not likely to change given that they entered Week 16 tied with the Patriots for the strongest remaining schedule, with their three final opponents having a .690 winning percentage. Here are the opponent winning percentages of the three teams that have 4-10 records: Broncos (.483), Rams (.500) and Cardinals (.517).
Why did the Bears get penalized for an illegal formation on their opening kickoff last Sunday against the Eagles?
Thanks for the question about last week's game, Pete. I haven't been receiving too many that aren't about free agency and the draft! The Bears were penalized for an illegal formation because Elijah Hicks had a foot over the 30-yard line and all players must line up between the 30 and where the ball is kicked at the 35. The NFL passed that rule in an effort to limit injuries, reducing the running start players can get when covering a kickoff. Here's how special teams coordinator Richard Hightower explained it: "That was Elijah on that play. He's lined up in that position 13 times prior and in the correct way. I think he just went out there and he started legally and then he just scooted back just a hair too far."