4 Of The Closest Times The Bears Have Come To Winning The Super Bowl Since 1985

Written By Chris Smith on December 2, 2021 - Last Updated on January 10, 2022
Cody Parkey

How have the Bears faired in postseason play since 1985? The Bears have made it to the postseason 12 times since 1985, which includes securing at least one win in five separate seasons during their postseason appearances.

Since head coach Mike Ditka and the Bears won the Super Bowl in 1985, Chicago has made the playoffs 12 times. The Bears entered as a divisional winner in seven of the 12 appearances, which includes a Super Bowl appearance.  The Bears saw a sustained playoff run, as the organization made it to the postseason five of the next six years after the organization’s Super Bowl win in 1985. Chicago defeated the New England Patriots in the 1986 Super Bowl, 46-10.

You won’t be able to bet on the Bears in the Big Game in 2022, as they won’t be participating. But you will be able to bet on the Super Bowl at Illinois online sportsbooks.


Chicago snuck into the playoffs as a wild card during the 1994 season, after having been absent from the postseason since 1991.  The Bears went 9-7 during the regular season, which tied with the Green Bay Packers and the Detroit Lions.  All three teams looked up to the Minnesota Vikings who finished atop the division with a record of 10-6.

The Bears were led by their defense, allowing just over 19 points per contest on the season. While the Bears looked up to the Vikings in the standings, it was the Vikings who were watching the Bears in the next round.

The National Football League saw the Bears upset the Vikings in the first round, as Chicago won with ease, 35-17.

In the win, quarterback Steve Walsh completed 15 of 23 passes for 221 yards.  Walsh added two passing touchdowns while throwing an interception.

Walsh threw touchdown passes to Keith Jennings and Jeff Graham. Kevin Miniefield added a fumble return for a touchdown for the Chicago defense in the fourth quarter.

Chicago would move on to face the San Francisco 49ers in the divisional round. However, a defense that had been solid all year could not turn away the 49ers.  The Bears would fall 44-15 thanks to a huge second quarter by San Francisco.

The Bears were outscored 24-0 in the second quarter, which turned out to be the difference in the contest.


Chicago was looking for its first win in postseason play since the 1994 campaign. The Bears would go winless in their only two playoff appearances between 1994 and 2006 (2001 and 2005).

The Bears finished atop the NFC North with a 13-3 record.  Chicago carried their regular season success into a postseason game with the Seattle Seahawks.  In a game that went back and forth, the offense came ready to play for head coach Lovie Smith.  Running back Thomas Jones collected two rushing touchdowns, while kicker Robbie Gould came up big late in the game.

Gould tied up the game with a 41-yard field goal late in the fourth quarter before kicking the game-winning field goal in overtime.

Gould and company would move on to face the New Orleans Saints.

Chicago led 9-0 thanks to three Gould field goals. The Bears led by a slim margin of 18-14 heading to the fourth. Then the flood gates opened. The Bears would outscore the Saints 21-0 in the final quarter of the game.

Chicago would move onto the Super Bowl and a date with the Indianapolis Colts.

The Bears got off to a great start thanks to the special teams unit. Devin Hester would return the opening kick off 92 yards for a score.  However, the Colts were then responsible for five of the next six drives that resulted in points.  The Bears would fall 29-17.

Quarterback Rex Grossman completed 20 of 28 passes for 165 yards, while adding a touchdown and an interception in the loss for the Bears.


The Bears finished 11-5 in the regular season and won in the opening round of the Playoffs against the Seahawks.

Smith couldn’t have been more pleased in the performance that his quarterback had put on display that game. Jay Cutler completed 15 of 28 passes for 274 yards, while registering two passing touchdowns. However, that was not all.

Cutler would also add two rushing touchdowns to help propel the Bears in the win. Chicago would hang on for a 35-24 victory.

The Bears would advance to play host to the Packers. However, that would be the end of the road for the Bears. Chicago fell 21-14 due to the Green Bay defense allowing zero points till the 4th quarter. And of course, Cutler had to leave the game due to a knee injury that was a massive story in Chicago at the time.


In Matt Nagy’s first year as head coach, the Bears finished 12-4 in the regular season and won nine of their last 10 games.

It turned out to be the peak of the Nagy era in Chicago. Mitchell Trubisky made the Pro Bowl as an alternate, and the defense, led by new trade acquisition Khalil Mack, terrorized the rest of the NFL.

Chicago was good enough to win that Super Bowl that year, but their special teams hindered them all season. And that came back to bite the Bears in the Playoffs.

Placekicker Cody Parkey attempted what could have been a game-winning field goal against the Philadelphia Eagles. Instead, it hit both uprights, and the infamous moment will forever be known as the “Double Doink.”

Looking Ahead

Young quarterback Justin Fields should give the organization a solid piece to build around for future success, but as of now, the Bears appear to be very far away from the Big Game.

However, Illinoisans can still bet on the Super Bowl at online sportsbooks in the state.


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Chris Smith

Chris Smith is a graduate of Lindenwood University-Belleville with a Mass Communications with Sports Information Emphasis degree. Chris’ experience includes writing matchup previews for Sports Chat Place and Picks & Parlays, while coaching two baseball teams in his spare time.

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