The Chicago Bears came into Week 8’s game against the Los Angeles Chargers with a lot to prove on offense. By the time halftime rolled around, the team was getting booed off the field.
The Bears were able to move the ball in the first half against the Chargers, but completely fell apart every time they got close to the end zone. The most egregious of those failures occurred just before half time.
With the Bears trailing by a point with just over two minutes to go in the second quarter, David Montgomery ripped off a 55-yard run that put the Bears at the 15-yard line. The team failed to convert a first down, but was bailed out by a Chargers penalty, which put the Bears on the 4-yard line with 46 seconds to go before half time.
Here’s what happened next:
• Montgomery ran for no gain on first down.
• Cordarrelle Patterson caught a 1-yard pass on second down.
• Mitchell Trubisky threw an incomplete pass to Allen Robinson on third down. A flag was thrown for defensive pass interference, setting up the Bears with a fresh set of downs from the 2-yard line.
• Trubisky threw an incomplete pass on first down.
• Montgomery ran for 1 yard on second down.
• Trubisky spiked the ball on third down.
• The Bears kicked a field goal to go up 9-7 at half. They were booed off the field by the home crowd.
While the level of ineptitude in that sequence is high, the final run to Montgomery was unforgivable. The team ran the ball with 25 seconds left and no timeouts. That caused the clock to run all the way down to one second. The Bears were lucky to spike the ball with enough time left to kick the field goal. Had they passed on second down, the Bears could have run another play on third down to try and score.
The drive summed up the team’s first half against the Chargers. The Bears got within the Chargers’ 10-yard line two other times in the first half, but settled for field goals both times. On the first goal-line drive, Trubisky threw three incomplete passes from the 4-yard line. On the second, Tarik Cohen ran the ball twice for two yards and Trubisky threw an incomplete pass.
Coming into the contest, Bears coach Matt Nagy took a lot of heat from local media for his play-calling during the team’s Week 7 loss to the New Orleans Saints. While the Bears’ offense showed some improvement getting down the field, the red-zone issues helped sink them against the Chargers.
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