The Pittsburgh Steelers team that the Bears will deal with on Sunday night is nothing short of desperate for a turnaround. Teams starting 0-3 simply do not make postseasons very often and that’s where the Steelers will be if they fall to the Bears.
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The Steelers have won three of the last four vs. the Bears and twice those games have resulted in changes of fortune in those seasons, and for both teams.
In 1995, coming of a playoff season with a postseason win, the Bears stood 6-2 when the 4-4 Steelers bumbled into Soldier Field and upset the favored Bears. The Steelers went on from there to reach the Super Bowl.
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Beginning with that game, the Bears lost five of six and spiraled downward the remainder of Dave Wannstedt’s tenure and on into Dick Jauron’s.
The Bears went to Pittsburgh in 2005 and were steamrolled 21-9 in the snow by Jerome Bettis. For the Steelers, that was the first of eight straight wins, the last of which being in Super Bowl XL. For the Bears, 9-3 at the time, it was the beginning of losing three out of their last five, including a first-round playoff loss at home.
“[Sunday night] will be a good test for us,” said coach Marc Trestman, who noted that the margin between being 2-0 and 0-2 borders on the infinitesimal. “You know we’re still…it’s only two games. A lot can happen, a lot did happen in those first two games. We’ll see where the season goes.”
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It has not always gone well for Bears teams after Pittsburgh.