Bears

Bears postgame observations: Fields struggles vs. Packers

Bears

The Bears didn’t make enough big plays on offense or defense to beat the Packers in Week 6. Green Bay and Rodgers showed that there’s still a considerable gap between them and the rest of the NFC North, and that the Bears will need to play much better if they want a chance to get even in Week 14.

JUSTIN FIELDS STRUGGLES

Fields started hot, going 3-3 for 46 yards in their opening touchdown drive. Included in that drive were several “special” throws, like a perfectly placed ball to Allen Robinson in the soft spot of a zone. After that however, both Fields and the offense started to sputter. He continued to hold on to the ball longer than he should’ve, and on a few occasions hesitated just a bit before taking off to run, which allowed the defense to catch up and stop him. The biggest moment Fields will want back is the opportunity he had to hit a wiiiiiiide open Robinson near the end of the first half. Robinson was completely uncovered and could’ve walked in for a score that could’ve put the Bears up 14-10 going into halftime. But Fields either never saw him, or couldn’t pull the trigger, and scrambled with the ball instead. He did rebound for another great drive in the fourth quarter, going 5-5 for 64 yards and a touchdown. But outside those two drives Fields went 8-19 for 64 yards and one interception.

RUN DEFENSE GASHED

The Bears defense thwarted the Packers’ first two drives with sacks from Khalil Mack and Robert Quinn. The Packers responded by working in quick passes and leaning on their run game. Normally you’d expect that to play into the defense’s strengths, but on Sunday the Bears couldn’t stop Aaron Jones or A.J. Dillon. They ran for 5.8 YPC and 5.4 YPC clips, respectively. Each man busted off a 25+ yard run, too. That effectively neutralized the Bears’ rush for the remainder of the game, and reopened the passing game for Aaron Rodgers. Once the Packers’ offense got rolling, the defense couldn’t stop them, or come up with a critical takeaway to turn the tide back in their favor.

 

KHALIL HERBERT PROVES HE CAN CARRY THE LOAD

Usually when a team is down to its third-string running back it spells trouble for the rushing attack. But the Bears were confident they were in good hands with sixth-round draft pick Herbert leading the way, and Herbert did not let them down. Herbert may be a rookie but he ran with the vision and patience of a veteran. He allowed blocks to develop downfield for him, then showed a knack for sensing exactly when to time his cutbacks. To be fair the continued success in the run game is a credit to the offensive line and tight ends who came in to block. Rushing has been a true team effort since the Bears rededicated themselves to it in Week 4. By the final whistle, Herbert amassed 97 yards and one touchdown on 19 carries, and he could’ve had more. He had another 16-yard touchdown run nullified by a holding call early in the fourth quarter.

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