What we learned as Bears' upset bid vs. Eagles falls short


CHICAGO -- Sunday's game at Soldier Field was supposed to be a mismatch. The 12-1 Philadelphia Eagles had steamrolled basically every team they've faced this season, while the Bears entered the game at 3-10 and without their top two receivers.

But the Bears gave the Eagles all they could handle Sunday on the lake shore. Chicago's defense forced three turnovers, and the Bears only trailed by four midway through the fourth quarter.

Justin Fields did all he could to keep the Bears' offense moving. He went 14-for-21 for 152 yards and two scores. He also rushed for 95 yards, eclipsing 1,000 for the season. Meanwhile, running back David Montgomery found the end zone twice.

But the Bears only got seven points off three Eagles turnovers, and they lost their seventh straight game.

Here’s what we learned in the Bears’ 25-20 loss to the Eagles:

Scary scene

Sunday’s game opened with an unnerving moment when right guard Teven Jenkins took on an Eagles defender and went down in pain.

Jenkins stayed down on the ground for a while before the cart was brought out for the second-year lineman. Jenkins was loaded onto a backboard and put in a neck brace.

The entire Bears team gathered around Jenkins at midfield as he was loaded onto the cart.

Jenkins was alert and talking to medical professionals while being carted into the locker room.

He was ruled out for the remainder of the game with a neck injury.

JF1 makes history

Fields entered the Bears’ record books during the second quarter.

After magically avoiding a sack, Fields galloped 39 yards inside the Eagles’ 10-yard line. The 39-yard run put Fields at 976 rushing yards on the season, breaking the franchise record for rushing yards by a quarterback set by Bobby Douglas in 1972.

Fields stepped out of bounds at the 9-yard line, but David Montgomery punched it in on the ensuing play to give the Bears a 6-3 lead after Cairo Santos missed a PAT.

Overmatched OL

The Bears’ offensive line had arguably the best game of its season in Week 13 against the Green Bay Packers.

That success did not carry over to Sunday’s game against the Eagles’ vaunted defensive line.

The Bears surrendered five sacks in the first half as the offensive line struggled to pick up the stunts and twists thrown at them by the Eagles’ front.

Left guard Cody Whitehair and right tackle Alex Leatherwood had a particularly poor first half.

On the day, Fields was sacked six times and was under constant pressure as the Bears' offensive line struggled to hold up against one of the top units in the NFL. 

HITS principle returns

After not recording a turnover in their last two games, the Bears’ defense found its takeaway mojo Sunday vs. the Eagles.

Kyler Gordon picked off Hurts on the Eagles’ first possession of the game. Safety DeAndre Houston-Carson intercepted a poorly thrown Hurts pass later in the first half.

The big takeaway came in the third quarter.

With the Bears trailing 17-6 and the game teetering on the brink, defensive tackle Mike Pennel Jr. stripped Miles Sanders. Gordon scooped up the ball and returned it to the Eagles’ 15-yard line.

Three plays later, Fields hit Montgomery for a 10-yard touchdown to cut the Eagles’ lead to 17-13.
Entering Sunday’s game, the Eagles were plus-14 in turnover differential.

Upset bid ended

The Bears hung with the Eagles all day at Soldier Field. After Jake Elliott doinked a 38-yard field goal with 8:25 remaining, Fields and the offense got the ball back down four with a chance to take the lead.

But the Bears went three-and-out, with Fields exiting the field with an apparent right leg injury after a holding call negated his 18-yard run on third down. Then, on third-and-14, Nathan Peterman's pass for Nsimba Webster fell incomplete.

The Bears punted the ball away, and the Eagles marched 75 yards in six plays, with Hurts plunging in from 1-yard out to give the Eagles a 25-13 lead after the successful two-point conversion.

Fields returned to the game and hit Byron Pringle for a 35-yard touchdown to cut the deficit to 25-20 with 2:43 remaining.

But the Bears' defense could not get Fields the ball back as Hurts' 12-yard pass to Brown on third-and-6 sealed the deal.

Click here to follow the Under Center Podcast.

Contact Us