The Chicago Bears decided to try to convert a fourth-and-one play in the fourth quarter of Sunday’s loss to the Denver Broncos, and that choice isn’t sitting well with fans or pundits.
The decision backfired, as Khalil Herbert was stopped short of the line to gain with less than three minutes to go in the contest.
The Broncos would go on to kick the go-ahead field goal, and the Bears ultimately lost, capping off a game where they blew a 21-point lead.
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After the game, NBC Sports Chicago analyst, and former Bears defensive end, Alex Brown took exception to head coach Matt Eberflus’ decision making.
“What coach Eberflus did there is ridiculous,” he said. “I can’t wait to hear what he has to say on why he didn’t kick that field goal. You have to do it and give your defense a chance. If I’m on defense, I’m really upset with him.”
In the lead-up to the 4th-and-1 play, the Bears called a timeout after unsuccessfully trying to get Denver to jump offsides. On the play that followed, Justin Fields lined up in the shotgun and attempted to hand the ball off to Herbert, who was stopped shy of the line to gain.
Brown pointed out that Eberflus is a defensive-minded coach, and said that such a decision indicates that he didn’t trust his defense to protect a three-point lead.
“You’re a defensive coach. You don’t believe in your defense? You won’t give your defense a chance?,” he said. “Cairo (Santos) is going to hit that, so give them an opportunity to go out and win the football game. That’s what their defense did. They went out and got an interception and won the game.”
The Broncos trailed 28-7 in the third quarter of the game, but scored 24 unanswered points to capture a stunning victory at Soldier Field.