Why Bears put Justin Fields, Tyrique Stevenson back in game after hits to head

Why Bears put Justin Fields, Tyrique Stevenson back in game after hits to head originally appeared on NBC Sports Chicago

LAKE FOREST, Ill. -- The minute Justin Fields took a shot to the head from Kansas City Chiefs linebacker Willie Gay during the fourth quarter on Sunday, his day should have been over.

Fields got up after taking the hit from Gay and immediately looked woozy. The third-year quarterback tried to stay in the game, but wide receiver DJ Moore forced him to the sideline and the Bears kicked a field goal to cut the deficit to 41-3. Fields went into the medical tent briefly before coming back on the sideline and returning to a game that had long been decided.

"He was cleared, right?" head coach Matt Eberflus said Sunday after the 41-10 loss at Arrowhead Stadium. "He came out. We were going for it on fourth down there, but he came out so I decided to kick the field goal, right? And then he was cleared and he was ready to go."

On Monday, Eberflus confirmed that Fields is good to go after the shot to the head.

"He came through OK," Eberflus said Monday at Halas Hall. "Took the big hit. But, again, he was ruled fine. Nothing was done there. Came back in, had that nice drive at the end. I thought we operated a good two-minute, on-the-ball type of offense. And that was good by him."

Fields wasn't the only Bear to take a big shot to the head.

Rookie cornerback Tyrique Stevenson left the game during the first quarter after hitting his head while tackling Chiefs running back Isiah Pacheco. Stevenson took a shot to the head on the tackle and then banged his head on a camera when he landed.

The rookie corner went to the sideline to get checked out for one play before returning to game action. But Stevenson would later leave the game to be evaluated for a concussion. Stevenson was later ruled out of the game with an illness, but Eberflus said Monday that there was no concussion test for Stevenson.

"It was weird. They told me both things, in terms of he’s in concussion protocol but it really ended up being a neck," Eberflus said Monday. "He never got checked for concussion protocol. It was really just his neck is all it was. It was a heck of a hit on the side. I thought the penalty could go either way. I thought one foot was out and one foot was in when he did make that hit. I thought it was a really good play to deter the runner to get to the end zone. Yeah, he’s in a good spot."

Eberflus later said it "was an illness" with Stevenson. We'll get a full injury report on Wednesday as the Bears begin preparation for the Denver Broncos.

Elsewhere on the injury front, linebacker Tremaine Edmunds left Sunday's loss during the second half but it's nothing to worry about.

"He was good to go," Eberflus said. "He actually could of come back in at the very end of the game. I left Sanborn in there. He was playing fine in that particular game, in that moment where that came was. We kept him out. Sanborn got some good reps."

Here's the snap count from the Bears' 41-10 loss in Kansas City:

Quarterback: Justin Fields 51

Running back: Khalil Herbert 28, Roschon Johnson 23, Khari Blasingame 5, Travis Homer 2

Wide receiver: DJ Moore 51, Chase Claypool 44, Darnell Mooney 36, Tyler Scott 10

Tight end: Cole Kmet 39, Marcedes Lewis 9, Robert Tonyan 8

Offensive line: Larry Borom 51, Lucas Patrick 51, Cody Whitehair 51, Ja'Tyre Carter 51, Darnell Wright 51

Defensive line: Justin Jones 50, Yannick Ngakoue 48, DeMarcus Walker 45, Andrew Billings 41, Rasheem Green 39, Dominique Robinson 38, Gervon Dexter 26, Zacch Pickens 20

Linebacker: T.J. Edwards 75, Tremaine Edmunds 56, Jack Sanborn 25, Noah Sewell 10

Defensive backs: Elijah Hicks 77, Jaquan Brisker 76, Terell Smith 57, Greg Stroman Jr. 49, Jaylon Jones 42, Jaylon Johnson 36, Tyrique Stevenson 22, Josh Blackwell 9, Quindell Johnson 6

Click here to follow the Under Center Podcast.