The NFL offseason is not officially underway until some player from a team that was bad the year before goes out on a limb and guarantees that his team will make the playoffs next year, so, welcome to the offseason. Thanks for getting us started, Jordan Howard.

The Chicago Bears running back appeared on NFL Network's "Good Morning Football" and was asked about his former teammate Alshon Jeffery guaranteeing a Super Bowl win last offseason (when he was with the Bears) and then going out and actually winning the Super Bowl (with the Eagles). 

Jeffery did not specify what team he was playing for and absolutely took credit for nailing his prediction in the wake of the Eagles 41-33 win over the Patriots

Howard tweeted about Jeffery's move shortly after the Super Bowl, suggesting he might make a guarantee himself this offseason.

So he was sort of goaded into doing so by the GMFB hosts, but, hey, it's the offseason and Howard was literally asking for it. 

"The Bears are definitely going to have a winning season," Howard said. "We're going to get to the playoffs. So I guarantee we get to the playoffs."

Here's the thing: if you're wrong, no one will care. If the Eagles lose the Super Bowl, Jeffery is not getting roasted all offseason for missing on his prediction. 

And no one thinks the Bears are going to be great next year, although they certainly have a little bit of L.A. Rams 2.0 to them, in the sense they had an old, conservative coach (John Fox, Jeff Fisher) who they fired to make way for a young offensive coordinator (Matt Nagy, Sean McVay) who is supposed to help the young franchise quarterback (Mitchell Trubisky, Jared Goff) elevate his game in his second year after being a top draft pick.

Come on fellas, it's all so simple! It's all ball bearings nowadays. Just hire a young OC, add water and you get an instant playoff run. Not really, and Howard knows it too. more than anything, the Bears have to find some weapons for Trubisky.

"We have to go after some receivers ... we definitely have to get some receivers in and help Mitch," Howard said. "I feel like that's the part that's going to complete us because we got the run game down, but now we just got to get the passing game going. I feel like that will take us over the top."

The Rams did a very nice job of finding help for Goff last year, adding Robert Woods via free agency, Cooper Kupp in the draft and then trading for Sammy Watkins leading up to the season. 

Like Los Angeles, the Bears have a running game in place (Todd Gurley vs. Jordan Howard/Tarik Cohen is at least comparable), but they do need to work on the help for the quarterback. Some of it will be scheme but some of it needs to be personnel. Fortunately for Chicago, it is hardly unusual for there to be turnover when it comes to playoff teams. 

In 2017 alone, there were five new NFC teams in the postseason. Right now the Bears feel like a bit of a reach to make a playoff run, but it's a long offseason and worst-case scenario is everyone forgets Howard was wrong. Welcome to the offseason.