Well that was something. The Bears were back, but then the Bears were cooked, but then the Bears were back again and the Bears won?! And are 1-0?! After being down by two scores?! They certainly flirted with disaster but somehow came out of Detroit 5-0 against the Lions in the Matt Nagy era. Heres whose arrows are up and down after one wild game:
Down UP – Mitch Trubisky
He’ll get more hate than his performance (19-35, 215 yards 2 TDs) deserves, but still, it wasn’t even close to good enough; Nick Foles was a trending topic on Twitter by halftime. After hearing so much about how his accuracy had improved throughout camp, Trubisky missed early connections with Allen Robinson, Jimmy Graham, Anthony Miller, and Cole Kmet all while the game was close and the Bears were moving the ball well. The second half, even with a touchdown pass to Graham, looked like it was getting uglier. It wasn’t a performance that’ll get him benched (though honestly who knows) but the game felt out of hand by the time Detroit went up 20-6, which generally doesn’t speak well on a QB …
BUT THEN. That comeback! Those throws to Anthony Miller! Credit where credit’s due – Trubisky can put together one hell of a game-winning drive. So much QB confusion is coming. Just enjoy the win for now.
Arrow Up – Cordarrelle Patterson Where was this all last year?! Patterson looked way more comfortable, and involved, in the offense on Sunday, finishing the game with 4 rushes for 19 yards, which sounds far worse than it looked. His three yard run on 4th-and-1 at the start of the 4th quarter kept the Bears in the game – technically speaking – for a few more drives, which is basically as good as it got on Sunday. The trio of Patterson, Tarik Cohen, and David Montgomery looked like an efficient, if not wonderfully bizarre, running attack that fans should be encouraged about going forward.
Arrow Down – Pass Rush That’s why the Bears spent 70 million dollars on Robert Quinn. Without him, the Bears didn’t have a single sack until late in the 4th quarter, which was only one of several head-turning performances on that side of the ball. They barely got to him at all: outside of Akiem Hicks’ sack, the Bears only had three QB hits all afternoon – two from Roy Robertson-Harris and one from Bilal Nichols. With all that time in a clean pocket, Stafford sat back and carved up them up in coverage, which is plenty concerning in its own right. If this defense can’t get to the QB, 9-7’s a pipe dream.
Arrow Up – Jaylon Johnson All in all, it was an encouraging performance from the Bears’ rookie. The bad: a 3rd quarter holding penalty on 3rd down that gave the Lions a new life. Also getting knocked into next week by Marvin Jones. The good: his coverage for most of the game, including a near-interception towards the end of the first half. Maybe Johnson’s arrow is more sideways than up or down, but it could have gone much worse for a rookie seeing real NFL contact for the first time ever.
Arrow Down Hon. Mentions – Cole Kmet; Danny Trevathan Arrow Up Hon. Mentions – Kyle Fuller, duh; Jimmy Graham kinda?; Anthony Miller