The Second-Half Disappearing Act, Mack to the Playoffs, Velus Jones Jr., and Other Bears Bullets

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The Second-Half Disappearing Act, Mack to the Playoffs, Velus Jones Jr., and Other Bears Bullets

Chicago Bears

The Bears traded Khalil Mack to the Chargers this offseason. And while it was a necessary move for Ryan Poles at the time, Mack will be heading back to the playoffs after he and his Los Angeles Chargers clinched a spot in the AFC postseason.

The playoff appearance will be the first for the Chargers since 2018 and the first appearance for second-year head coach Brandon Staley and quarterback Justin Herbert.

  • Khalil Mack sacked Nick Foles in some former Bear on-former Bear crime last night. Mack’s sack of Foles was one of seven sacks that the Chargers defense delivered in a 20-3 victory over Indianapolis on Monday Night Football.
  • Foles was bad with a capital B on Monday night … I mean …
  • The NFL is going to want to have a conversation with Chargers safety Derwin James today:
  • I don’t care how bad you think things are going for the Bears; you could always be a Colts fan. In the last four weeks, the Colts have been embarrassed in primetime three times (twice on MNF and once on SNF) and allowed the Vikings to perform the most significant comeback victory in NFL history. Big Yikes in Indianapolis.
  • The Bears’ offense wasn’t great on Saturday against the Bills. They were completely absent in the second half. Buffalo held the Bears to a lone field goal in the second half as they eventually wore the Bears undermanned defense down and outscored them 29-3 in the final two quarters.
  • Here’s what the Bears second half drives looked like:
  1. Fumble (4 plays, 3 yards, 2:07)
  2. Punt (3 plays, 5 yards, 1:26)
  3. Punt (3 plays, 2 yards, 1:46)
  4. Downs (5 plays, 53 yards, 2:25)
  5. Field Goal (4 plays, 1 yard, 1:54)
  6. Punt (3 plays, 3 yards, 1:52)
  7. Downs (4 plays, -4 yards, 1:37)
  8. Interception (5 plays, 25 yards, 1:02)
  • The Bears combined for 88 yards on 31 plays (2.6 yards per play) and possessed the ball for 14:09. Yeah, that isn’t good. But the question is, should we be worried about the second half stinker for the Bears offense in the second half?
  • The answer is no. When you consider the circumstances; temperatures below freezing with the wind chill, swirling winds, and not a whole lot of reason for the primary offensive catalyst Justin Fields to put himself at risk, there isn’t much reason to worry about two of the worst quarters of offense we’ve seen from the Bears in months.
  • Matt Eberflus said on Monday that the Bills did a great job of taking away Justin Fields’ ability to get it going on the ground but stressed that the Bills didn’t do much different than any of their other opponents; they just executed their game plan better. And honestly, there probably was a point in the second half where Eberflus and Luke Getsy decided to mail it in and not expose their franchise quarterback to unnecessary hits.
  • If Fields leaving the game healthy was their focus in the second half, mission accomplished. Even despite Fields leaving early after having his foot stepped on in the fourth quarter, Matt Eberflus said on Monday that Fields was healthy and good to go for their Week 17 matchup against the Lions.
  • Eberflus also confirmed that Fields would not be shut down and gave a resounding no on that question, stressing the importance of the season’s final two games.
  • You can read more about that here:
  • One of the highlights of the second half was Luke Getsy dialing up a deep ball for Velus Jones Jr., and the rookie — who’s had his fair share of lowlights this season — was able to haul in a beauty of a throw by Justin Fields.
  • In other NFL news, Tua Tagovailoa was placed in the NFL’s concussion protocol on Monday:
  • Sources: The Bulls are still, not good …
  • Blackhawks prospects (and hopefully prospects) were in action on Monday at World Juniors:

Author: Patrick K. Flowers

Patrick is the Lead NFL Writer at Bleacher Nation. You can follow him on Twitter @PatrickKFlowers.