It was a defensive showdown in Baltimore today, and the Bears defense played a near flawless game, allowing only three Justin Tucker field goals.
Unfortunately, the Bears special teams gave up 15 disheartening points, making the game much closer than it should have been.
The Ravens defense on the other hand, couldn’t keep Jordan Howard and the Bears rookie passers from dumping a 27 burger on them, and the Bears pulled off an “upset” win on the road. The full box score can be found here.
The Ravens haven’t lost to a rookie quarterback in over
nine zero years now that Biscuit came to town and did what Andrew Luck and 8 others failed to accomplish.
Speaking of which...
Trubisky didn’t have a lot of opportunities in this game, and many of his limited “pass attempts” were throw-aways with quick pressure and unopen receivers.
On his actual pass attempts, Mitch had several overthrows but I’m not worried about his accuracy. If I were to guess, I would say he was overcompensating for his interception last week and erroring on the side of throwing balls the defender has no chance of getting. He’ll figure it out eventually, but in this game, keeping the ball safe was all he needed to do.
Trubisky showed his mobility again, with a couple good scrambles. He’s faster than most people realize—his 40 time was actually better than Deshaun Watson. I wasn’t discouraged by the Vikings defensive ends keeping him in check: they both have ridiculous 4.5 speed. I’m glad to see his athleticism start to get the Bears some important gains.
It was nice to see Biscuit throw a beautiful touchdown dime to Dion Sims. This time nobody can argue any “should have been an interception” garbage.
My biggest concern with Biscuit is that this is the second week in a row he took a blind-side sack with no awareness. This time it led to a fumble. I just hope it never leads to an injury.
Both teams showed good run defenses. The Bears keeping everything to minimal gains, and the Ravens getting great penetration into the backfield. The result was more big plays for the Ravens but more consistent stops for the bears. Alex Collins gained one great gain, cutting too fast past Trevathan and getting into the secondary, but the Ravens were otherwise stomped down by the Bears’ ferocious run defense.
John Fox is trying to appeal to millennials by growing a beard. It won’t save his job on its own, but I have to admit, it’s a good start.
Either Dowell Loggains started listening to the fans or knew this would be a defensive game where the Bears would just need to avoid mistakes, but he flipped his normal pass:run ratio on its head and it worked. I wanted to see more passes from Trubisky because I can’t get enough of that Biscuit magic, but selfish reasons aside, I think Loggains called a good game.
Loggains showed us another gimmicky play with Tarik Cohen throwing a touchdown to Zach Miller. I don’t know how often this is going to work, but as long as it does, I’m enjoying it. It has the added bonus of keeping Trubisky humble for as long as possible.
Bears caught a couple good breaks and made a couple great plays to win the turnover margin. Bryce Callahan nabbed the Bears first interception of the year with a terrific diving catch and an equally impressive run back to set up the Bears trick-play touchdown.
The highlight of the day though was a Kyle Fuller tip that led to an Adrian Amos career-first interception and run-back for a touchdown. The Bears made up for some lost time in the interception game today!
The Ravens defense frequently soured the Bears plans with unblocked rushers making it into the backfield on stunts or by beating the Bears ancillary blockers. Several tackles for loss in the run game and forced dump offs for Biscuit, who did a good job protecting himself despite persistent pressure.
The Bears O-line has not been working as a cohesive unit yet this year, and Dion Sims has not proven to be the “blocking” tight end he was advertised to be. I’m hoping at least the first half of this equation improves as the same 5 guys continue working together moving forward.
Mr. Fuller came to play today and had his best game of the season. He looked great in coverage and showed up with aggressive tackles in the run and screen game. He has my vote to stay a Bear after this year. I’m sending my ballot to Pace right now.
The one week suspension gave Trevathan some extra time to reflect on how much he loves balling out and making incredible plays. He had the fumble recovery for the first Bears’ takeaway and several crucial stuffs in the run game. Oh yeah, and a sack. Welcome home, Danny!
Jordan Howard performed like a classic bell cow back, starting a little slow and improving over the course of the game to punish a tiring ravens defense. Love that Bear.
The Front Three
Eddie Goldman always plays well, but his presence stood out more than usual today.
Akiem Hicks continues to play at an all-pro level, leading us to take his sacks for granted. I’m not quite sure why Hicks isn’t a superstarr in Chicago. I guess the Bears have to win a little more before he gets noticed. Maybe Loggains can cook something up for him to throw a touchdown next week...
Oh yeah, Unrein also keeps playing well, especially against the run. Earlier this year I was hoping Jaye Howard would be an upgrade over Mitch Unrein. Turns out Unrein is an upgrade over former Mitch Unrein.
Special Teams Meltdown
The Bears were midway through the third with suspiciously few big mistakes when Bobby Rainy tripped over his own teammate, and got up without being touched and Benny Cunningham seemed to be the only Bear who put any effort into chasing him.
Then, with barely a minute left, the Bears punt is returned for a touchdown to tie the game in a discouragingly Bears series of miscues.
I have a feeling that these wouldn’t have happened if Special Teams Captain and proverbial Ace Sherick McMannis hadn’t been out with an injury.
Trubisky to Kendall Wright seals the win
Y’all already know how I feel about Kendall Wright. What more does he have to do?