If the story of the first half centered around the struggles of 2017 first-round pick Mitch Trubisky’s struggles in executing the offense, then it is only right that the game ended because 2017 second-round kick Adam Shaheen’s inability to catch a kickoff.
Seriously, a muffed kickoff that wasn’t cleanly handled by Shaheen when a clean possession would have given the Bears a puncher’s chance of tying the game was a fitting way to end Sunday’s game.
The Eagles beat the Bears 22-14 in a game that probably should’ve never been that close after a downright awful showing in the first half by Chicago’s football team.
A no-show in the first-half was the last thing anyone expected to see out of the Bears after a gut-punch loss against the Chargers last week, but it is *EXACTLY* what we saw. They had what was — quite literally — one of the worst offensive first-half showings in modern league history. Meanwhile, Philadelphia was putting together lengthy scoring drives when they had the ball and made a 12-0 halftime lead look insurmountable. The goose was cooked and the Eagles were going to fly away with an easy win. But a funny thing happened along the way as the Bears mounted a comeback.
Chicago found some semblance of a rushing game, built a play-action based passing attack off that, and put together something that resembled a competent offensive effort. David Montgomery scored two touchdowns on the ground. The Bears even used the I-formation in goal-to-go situations! That represented quite a philosophical shift from spreading the field with receivers, gadget players, and bunched tight ends on plays where there was only one player going out in a route!
It wasn’t enough, but it was something.
But will it be worth anything?
After all, incomplete and uneven efforts aren’t new to these Bears. We saw incomplete efforts at times in 2018, which led Matt Nagy to go a long way to drive home how valuable it was to play complete games early in his Bears coaching career.
Those lessons clearly need to be re-visited again.
The Bears are now on a four-game losing streak. They are 3-5 with seven games remaining against opponents ahead of them in the standings. Four of those games are against teams that had winning records last season, including three playoff teams. This is where we’ll see what the Bears are made of as a team. Because creating a good culture is easy when you’re winning. But when your team is losing, then the team’s real character tends to show itself. Game on.