By MADDIE TOPLIFF
There’s sad, and then there’s the feeling I got after watching the Chicago Bears lose their season opener to the Green Bay Packers for the second year in a row. I’m thinking more on the lines of devastation. Let’s see what went wrong for the Monsters of the Midway this week.
Green Bay gets their way
First quarter was a mixed bag, but was a good foreshadowing of what was to come the rest of the game. Running back Tarik Cohen fumbled one of his first carries, but luckily, a turnover was avoided – in this series, anyway. New Bears place kicker Eddy Piñeiro put the Bears on the board first with a 38-yard FG inside the last five minutes of Q1.
In general, Green Bay and the Bears’ offenses took their time finding momentum, but Chicago’s defense came out looking strong. One commentator remarked that the Bears pushing the Packers’ offense back was “where all the yards have been.” And the stats back it up: the Packers saw only 17 yards of forward progress the first two drives — that’s the fewest in Rodgers history.
Q1 ended with the Bears up 3-0, but that didn’t last long. Rodgers got hot fast at the top of Q2, taking only 95 seconds to take his team 74 yards for the first touchdown of the game — an 8-yard pass to Jimmy Graham. Annoying.
Outside of failing to shut down the TD drive, Chicago defense was still looking pretty good — a sack courtesy of Akiem Hicks inside the last seven minutes of the half put a smile on my face. The Bears’ short passing game in Q2 struggled to convert on third down, though, so the half ended 3-7 Green Bay.
What was witnessed in the second half can barely be considered good football. Don’t just take my word for it — fans on social media were comparing this game to this year’s Super Bowl: another terrible example of football. So that’s great.
The Bears went 3-and-out on their first series of the second half, with Trubisky getting a whole two yards off. During the second series, he got sacked on 3rd and 1, as in yes, only one yard away from 1st down. During the third series, things got exciting when Trubisky connected a 22-yard pass and 29-yard pass back-to-back, finally moving Chicago down the field. But for some reason, Bears head coach Matt Nagy thought a QB sneak up the middle was the right play to call on 4th and 10 — no, they were not even in the red zone yet — so we turned the ball over to Green Bay on downs.
Thanks to a strong defensive effort, Green Bay wasn’t able to capitalize on any of the Bears’ offensive blunders in Q3. And adding two more Rodgers sacks in the meantime was pretty cool.
Q4 was truly something. Trubisky strung a couple hopeful passes together, and then his offensive decided to repay him by racking up 30 yards in penalties. Yes, 1st and 40 is possible, folks. With five minutes left, GB place kicker Mason Crosby knocked in a 39-yard field goal. With plenty of time to find the end zone, Trubisky slowly but surely made it down the field only to get picked off right before the 2-minute warning. Final score: 3-10 Green Bay.
- Nagy called a pretty terrible game for being named the 2018 Coach of the Year.
- Standout rookie RB David Montgomery didn’t see the ball nearly enough.
- Trubisky needs to remember how to be an NFL quarterback.
Maddie’s Monster of the Game
As always, we have to give credit where credit is due because the score could’ve been worse.
I’ve gotta shout out the entirety of the Bears defense this week. Each time Rodgers got sacked Thursday, it was courtesy of a different player. We love a versatile effort. Let’s hope the offense can help them out next week.
The Minnesota Vikings stuck it to the Atlanta Falcons pretty easily, scoring 28 points to the Falcons’ 12. The Detroit Lions tied in their opener against the Arizona Cardinals, which means the Bears are the only NFC team to lose this week. Yay.
Need to buck the Broncos
The Bears saddle up against the Denver Broncos on the road next Sunday at 3:25 pm CST on Fox. See you right back here for that game’s recap next week. Beardown.