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Five takeaways from Bears-Washington

The Bears fell to 5-8 and it's time to examine what was learned from the 24-21 loss to Washington.

Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports

That game yesterday felt a little different. In the first two quarters I was angry. The Bears were getting throttled, surrendering two huge drives to Washington, including a 15-play, 80-yard drive to open the game.

The Bears took the play and when eight yards in five plays (thanks to a penalty) and then allowed Washington to go 93 yards in 3:18 on just eight plays.

Down 14-0 I really felt like the game could be over. Perhaps Washington saw something on film that they knew they could exploit and were just going to blow the Bears out.

But that's not this John Fox team. Give them credit, they fought back to force two three and outs and the offense got a touchdown to get back in the game.

It's unfortunate that Jay Cutler had another good effort go to waste. Cutler had a turnover but it came on a sack he never saw coming. Later in the game he took another sack on a play that I thought he held onto the ball too long but other than that he played great football and had the team in a position to win again.

There were some things that came out of this game other than just another bad result. And no, it isn't all on the kicker.

Robbie Gould has the yips - Sure it's not all on Robbie but we'd be lying if we said it wasn't partly on him. It wasn't a game-winning field goal that he missed though. There is no guarantee that the Bears win in overtime even if he does make that kick but I can understand the outrage. Gould's confidence is certainly shaken, I don't know how it couldn't be. That said though, there is no reason to think he can't get it back. Be careful what you wish for when hoping Gould is run out of town. Less we forget Doug Brien.

Adam Gase's play calling was suspect again - Lament that John Fox is so conservative he should be a GOP candidate in the Iowa Caucus, but he wasn't really the problem at the end of the game. The Bears drove right down the field on the drive, mostly assisted by Alshon Jeffery's 50 yard catch, but after that it was a three-yard run and then two deep pass attempts. Why? Why not try a play-action or something a little bit shorter, toward the sideline. I thought they should go for the touchdown, I figured with Gould's struggles last week playing for OT was the wrong call. They did go for the endzone but I thought the way in which they went about it was poorly executed.

The running game needs to be fixed - One week removed from a 170-yard team effort, the ground game mustered only 87 yards on the ground. Even with a healthy 4.0 yards per attempt it never felt like the running game was dominating or could take over the game. Their longest run for the day was just 10 yards. For the season the team is averaging only 3.8 YPC. If the team is going to take on the identity that Fox wants, they need to get better in the ground game.

Pass rusher has to be on the offseason upgrades list - I think Willie Young and Lamarr Houston have earned spots on the team going into the next year based on their performances this year, Young and Houston each picked up a sack yesterday, giving Houston six on the season and Young 5.5. Houston had two tackles for loss and a QB hit while Young had three TFLs and three QB hits. Other than those two, though, there isn't much of a consistent pass rush. Yes, Eddie Goldman is improving but with Pernell McPhee banged up the defense is missing a dynamic game-changer. They could not disrupt Kirk Cousins enough to get him out of rhythm and he finished the day with a 77.4 completion percentage.

Jordan Reed has the Bears' number - Jordan Reed has now played the Bears twice in his career. In those two games he has totaled 18 catches for 254 yards and two touchdowns. The Bears could not slow Reed down. The Bears have had trouble slowing down athletic tight ends in recent years and I don't know how they can start but it reared its ugly head again yesterday.

What were your big takeaways from yesterday's game?