The New Orleans Saints were missing 2018 Pro Bowlers Drew Brees, Alvin Kamara, and Jared Cook, their starting quarterback, running back, and tight end respectively. But they were also missing their starting nickel back, P.J. Williams, and a key performer on their defensive line, Trey Hendrickson, who is second on the team with three sacks.
But that didn’t matter as the Saint back-ups all stepped up and took out the Bears 36 to 25 in a game that wasn’t as close as the score would indicate. The Bears managed 15 garbage time points after the score was 36 to 10, and those last few minutes of the game were the only time all afternoon where the Bears’ offense did a damn thing.
The final offensive numbers were embarrassing as the Saints out-gained the Bears 424 to 252, but before the final two drives against the Saint prevent, the Bears had only mustered 120 pathetic yards of offense.
The Bears lost the time of possession each quarter.
1st Quarter - 8:38 to 6:22
2nd Quarter - 9:13 to 5:47
3rd Quarter - 11:47 to 3:13 (Insert eye roll GIF here)
4th Quarter - 7:48 to 7:12
Final Time of possession - 37:26 to 22:34 (Insert WTF GIF here)
I wonder if running the ball on occasion would help the Bears manage the game better and get them into a rhythm? And don't even start up with the o-line was bad b.s. because how the Hell would we even know after so few rushing attempts? The Bears had a franchise low 7 rushing plays on Sunday (on Walter Payton bobble-head day no less) to 56 drop backs. Head coach Matt Nagy seems to be aware that he needs to run more, and if his ultimate excuse is that some of the RPOs could have been runs instead of passes, then maybe he should stop calling the RPOs.
The Bears only had 4 first downs in the first three quarters, and for the game they were 2 for 12 on third down conversions (17%).
But now let’s take a closer look at the playing time break downs for the Bears, and also some individual stats.
The Bears offense sputtered through most of the game with Allen Robinson II as the only player capable of making a play. He was targeted a game high 16 times, catching 10 for 87 yards and a TD.
Javon Wims caught a 6 yard TD and Anthony Miller caught 5 for 64 yards. Miller also fumbled on his only rushing attempt.
Tarik Cohen was targeted 12 times and he caught 9 for only 19 yards. He also led the team in rushing with 3 runs for 10 yards. David Montgomery ran the ball two times for
Mitchell Trubiksy ended up with decent looking numbers, but it was all garbage time stat padding. He only had 84 yards passing through 3 quarters.
Was the Bears defense gassed? Probably. But they also allowed the Saints to convert nearly fifty percent of their third down tries (7 of 15), while only getting 1 sack, 4 QB hits, and 2 tackles for loss.
Somebody — anybody — on that Bears defense could make a play...
They allowed 151 rushing yards (119 and 2 TDs to backup Latavius Murray) and they allowed Teddy Bridgewater (the QB2) to get an efficient 100.9 passer rating on his 281 yards (2 TDs). Back up tight end Josh Hill had one of Bridgewater’s 2 TDs among his 3 grabs for 43 yards.
Danny Trevathan led the Bears in tackles with 10, and Khalil Mack’s 8 tackles was second most on the team. Abdullah Anderson had the Bears only sack.
*The above image has players that only played in the third phase.
Patrick O’Donnell only had one punt blocked, but he had another that was deflected, and on the day his net average was only 31 yards.
Cordarrelle Patterson had a nice 102 yard kickoff return for a touchdown and he recovered an onsides kick.
Ben Braunecker had 3 tackles on special teams and nearly recovered an onsides kick himself, but he stepped out of bounds.
Eddy Pineiro made his only field goal and extra point.
All statistics and snap counts are taken directly from the NFL’s Game Statistic and Information System, as are the accompanying pictures.
To check out the full box score I find that ESPN has an easy to navigate site.