Chicago Bears Good, Bad and Ugly in Win Over Giants
As with all wins or losses, there is good, bad and the ugly and Sunday at Soldier Field when the Bears beat the New York Giants 17-13 was no different.
The empty stands were ugly, and quiet. The Bear-Raid siren echoing and Staley the Bears' mascot dancing in front of empty seats were ugly. Having a new public address announcer with no public to address was ugly.
But we're talking about the game itself.
Mitchell Trubisky's patience in the pocket and ability to drill the ball through zone coverage on the intermediate routes, the posts, skinny posts off play-action throws and also the RPOs was a big change over their last effort. It made the first two touchdown drives. And it wasn't just the intermediate or longer routes. He stayed with the progression and finally saw David Montgomery wide open on the right sideline for the short pass which Montgomery turned into a 28-yard touchdown with some nifty cuts downfield. In the past, Trubisky has simply taken off on a play like that and gained a few rushing yards.
Also good was the outside pass rush early from Khalil Mack and Robert Quinn. It was just the way they had designed this when they signed Quinn. A strip sack by Quinn and a Mack recovery gave them the chance for an easy field goal. Mack had another sack in the fourth quarter on a Giants field goal drive. Quinn was about an inch from a second sack when he had Daniel Jones taken down but Jones somehow flipped it out like a lateral to his right and escaped a sack with his knee an inch above the turf.
Also Good, the running game late when the Giants knew they were running but David Montgomery tore through them for runs of 11, 10 and 23 yards as they just pounded through the defense. On the 23-yarder, the Bears had an illegal chop block called on Germain Ifedi the previous down—a bad call because you actually need to make contact on the chop block and he kind of whiffed. But Montgomery bailed him out with the 23-yard run on the next play. You can win games that way. It's pass to score, run to win, but in this case the Bears almost squandered that time-consuming drive at the end.
The sporadic offense overall. It was like last week in reverse. They went into hiding after the first half when they had a 17-0 lead and struggled. The first week they hid until the fourth quarter. Trubisky's two interceptions hurt but you can only really blame him for one. Allen Robinson made a rare bad play. He should have simply prevented the one on the sidelines on the jump ball. But he allowed it to be stolen.
Also bad, four sacks of Mitchell Trubisky. He probably held the ball too long on one of the sacks and then weakly stepped up into the pass rush instead of running out to the side. The other three were pass blocking breakdowns. Cody Whitehair, of all people, was beaten on one of those straight up.
Saquon Barkley's knee injury was one. You never want to see that, even with an opposing ball carrier. No Bears fan of a certain age ever likes seeing a star running back hurt his knee after seeing Gale Sayers taken off the field with his leg dangling.
Also ugly was Cairo Santos' missed 50-yard kick. A 50-yarder isn't that tough in September on a calm Soldier Field day. Look at what Harrison Butker did for the Chiefs Sunday 58 yards, actually three times but only two counted. Eddy Pineiro needs to heal that groin.