Although he's missed the last three games, Bears safety Chris Harris expressed his frustration with a defense that's ranked second to last in the NFL.
"Being the 31st ranked defense after four [weeks] is disgusting," Harris wrote on his Twitter account. "It makes [you] stop, step back and look in the mirror. We will get that fixed."
The Bears have looked pretty awful, particularly for most of the last three games. They played solid in the first half against the New Orleans Saints and in the fourth quarter against the Carolina Panthers. But they've been gashed on the ground and through the air.
"It hasn't been typical of the type of defense that we play, or we're supposed to play to be successful. Or to be one of the top defenses in the NFL," Lance Briggs said. "The only warning signs are when you turn on the tape, and you see the mistakes. And the fact that guys aren't in their gaps. Guys aren't playing as violent as we need them to play. There are things we need to do defensively that starts right here."
Unlike the offense, the Bears defense has been fairly healthy, with the exception of Harris, who -- in his absence -- is proving his importance to the unit.
And the Bears defense, which set the tone so often last season, has allowed opponents to score on the opening drive the last two games.
The Bears have hoped that someone would step up in Harris' absence but safeties have continued to struggle.
And there isn't just one problem.
They have been hurt by running backs, quarterbacks, tight ends, etc...
"I don't know what it is," linebacker Brian Urlacher said. "We're just not making big plays and giving up too many long runs, long passes. We're giving up big plays and not making any ourselves."
Asked if it's just missing assignments, Urlacher said, "It's not that simple.
"Wish it was. We could fix that real easily. We're just not doing the things we normally do. Sometimes we're not running to the football, sometimes not catching the balls that are thrown to us like we usually do. It's all fixable. We've got to just do it."
Now, they face a tough game, at Ford Field, against an explosive Lions offense.
How big is this game?
"It's huge," Briggs said. "It's a division game, and it's a game that puts us right in the mix or will set us back three games. We're coming off two losses, in the conference. This is a must have. We have to have it. Period."