What we learned in Bears' 49-29 shootout loss to Cowboys


ARLINGTON, Texas – Once again, the Bears dug a giant hole against a more talented team. Once again, they didn't have enough juice in the tank to overcome a 21-point deficit.

That was the story in a Week 5 loss to the Minnesota Vikings, and it was the story Sunday where the Bears fell to 3-5 after a 49-29 loss to the Dallas Cowboys at AT&T Stadium.

Dak Prescott and the Cowboys' offense had their way with the Bears' defense early on, racing out to a 28-7 lead.

But just as they did in Minnesota, Justin Fields and the Bears came roaring back, scoring the next 16 points to cut the deficit to five midway through the third quarter.

The comeback was not to be, though. The Cowboys marched right down the field to push the lead back to 12, and then Micah Parsons put the final nail in the Bears' coffin when he returned a David Montgomery fumble 36 yards for a touchdown to put Dallas back up 19.

The Bears showed fight Sunday in Dallas. Fields played well, finishing the day going 17-for-23 for 151 yards and two touchdowns. He also added 60 yards and a touchdown on the ground. The Bears' NFL-best rushing attack racked up 240 yards on the ground.

But once again, the Bears were doomed by a slow start against a team that already had the talent edge.

Here’s what we learned in the Bears’ 49-29 loss to the Cowboys at AT&T Stadium:

No answers on D

The Bears’ defense has taken significant steps forward since the ugly first half against the Vikings in Week 5. They regressed during their trip to The Lone Star State.

The Cowboys chewed up the Bears’ defense in the first half. Dallas scored on each of its first four possessions and was a perfect 6-for-6 on third down. The Cowboys averaged 8.4 yards per play, 7.0 yards per rush, and 9.5 yards per attempt on the first four drives.

But the Cowboys got greedy near the end of the first half. With 40 seconds left, the Cowboys could have taken a 28-14 lead into the locker room. But Prescott tried to push it downfield and picked off by Eddie Jackson. Jackson returned it to the Dallas 24-yard line, and the Bears tacked on three points before the break.

The Bears' defense had no answers for Prescott and running back Tony Pollard. When the final horn sounded, the Bears allowed 442 yards, 7.7 yards per play, and 49 points.

Not a good day for Alan Williams' unit.

Missed deep-ball opportunities

Offensive coordinator Luke Getsy dialed up a few deep shots in the first half against the Cowboys, but the Bears could not connect on either.

On the Bears’ first offensive play, Fields had Equanimeous St. Brown and Darnell Mooney running open deep. Fields ripped one deep toward St. Brown, but Fields underthrew the pass and it was broken up.

If Fields leads St. Brown, it’s a huge completion and perhaps a touchdown. St. Brown also could have done a better job fighting to get back to the ball to try and draw a defensive pass interference flag.

The Bears ended up going three-and-out on their opening possession.

Later in the first half, rookie Velus Jones Jr. got behind the corner, and Fields tossed a dime for what should have been a 53-yard touchdown. But the ball clanked off Jones’ hands and fell incomplete.

Luckily for the Bears, Fields and the offense cashed in later in the drive, as Fields ripped a dart to N’Keal Harry for a 17-yard touchdown.

The Bears went into the locker room trailing 28-17.

Fields was 8-for-11 for 46 yards and a touchdown in the first half. He also added 42 yards and a touchdown on the ground.

No comeback in Big D, but more greatness from Fields

Much like that Week 5 game in Minnesota, the Bears came out in the second half looking to complete a double-digit comeback.

The Bears’ offense went three-and-out on its first offensive possession, but the defense quickly got the ball back and Fields went to work.

Khalil Herbert fumbled on first-and-10 from the Bears’ 38-yard line, but replay reversed the call, and the Bears avoided disaster. Fields threw a strike to a wide-open Darnell Mooney for a gain of 36 on the next play and then hit Mooney for 6 more on the ensuing play.

Two plays later, Hebert made a nice cutback and raced into the end zone for a 12-yard score. The Bears went for two to cut the Cowboys’ lead to three, but DeMarcus Lawrence came unblocked and sacked Fields to keep the deficit at 28-23.

The Bears’ defense, however, couldn’t rise to the occasion.

After Herbert’s score, the Cowboys went right back down the field, chewing up the Bears on a seven-play, 75-yard drive that Pollard capped off with a 7-yard touchdown run to make it 35-23.

Any chance of a Bears' comeback was snuffed out on the next drive.

Fields hit Montgomery over the middle on third-and-17, but linebacker Leighton Vander Esch stripped him. Parsons recovered the fumble but was never touched down. Fields jumped over Parsons, thinking the linebacker had already been touched. But instead, Parsons got up and raced 36 yards for a touchdown.

The Bears cut the deficit back to 13 early in the fourth quarter when Fields found Cole Kmet for a 10-yard touchdown, but the Cowboys answered with a 54-yard touchdown run from Pollard, and that was all she wrote.

Loss aside, it was another positive day for Fields. The second-year quarterback accounted for 209 total yards and three touchdowns. He put up 29 points on a Cowboys' defense that had only given up more than 17 points one other time this season.

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