Here we are. It’s the last game of the season. The Chicago Bears are out of playoff contention, but they have a chance to make sure the Green Bay Packers don’t make the playoffs either. And Justin Fields and Matt Eberflus have a chance to prove they can beat the Packers before a potential offseason of reckoning approaches.
The Bears put the ball in Justin Fields’ hands
The Beas offense has been starting strong, and the Bears decided to receive after winning the toss. I love it. It’s time to take a lead and show Lambeau this isn’t going to be the cakewalk it was last time.
One play in and the Bears are ahead of schedule
With a return to the 31 yard line, Velus Jones Jr. puts the Bears offense in a good position to attack on their first drive.
Bears take the lead
For a moment, it felt like the Bears might march down the field with ease, but the Packers swarmed for a 1st down sack that the Bears couldn’t recover from, and our Beloved had to settle for a 50 yard field goal. The ball single-doinked in the Bears’ favor, and Santos put 3 on the board. We’ll take it.
Running back Aaron Jones slipped on the first Packers offensive drive, keeping an otherwise promising-looking screen to a 4 yard gain. Hahahaha.
We’re going to need more slips
The Packers' offense is moving the ball way too easily. Does anyone else feel like Matt LaFleur has Eberflus’ number and always will?
Bears defense finally clamps down
It took some heroic coverage from Tyrique Stevenson and a beautiful sack from Demarcus Walker to force a field goal and then an unforced error from the Packers kicker to miss an easy little 47 yard field goal. I’m getting dangerously close to being hopeful the bounces will go our way this game...
Tyler Scott brought his catching paws today
1 target, 1 catch. No reason to think this trend won't continue.
Was Trent Taylor just assigned to block Rashan Gary?
This feels familiar. Ask a player to make a block they can’t make and have the quarterback do a play action looking in the other direction so they have literally no chance to see the unimpeded defender before they are in their face. Why do the Bears keep doing this?
The Gillotine strikes again
In retrospect, it was probably smart for the Bears to take two negative plays in a row because it put Trenton Gill in prime field position to pin the Packers within their own 10 with his punt. It was a nice moment from the young Bear. And assuming the Packers will now drive the ball 90+ yards for a touchdown, it will also mark the last time I’m in a good mood this season.
Is Tony Romo losing his touch?
I’m just sitting here listening to him talk about Jordan Love having a high ceiling, and he just feels more overrated and irrelevant to me than ever. Not sure if I can put my finger on why.
I hope the Bears have more mental toughness than I do
Because with that one touchdown drive, I’ve already given up hope. Jordan Love looks like peak Aaron Rodgers and the Packers rookie receivers all look like peak Jake Kumerow. The world isn’t fair or even hospitable.
The Bears offensive line still looks outmatched
I suppose we could have seen this coming, but the line had been playing pretty well leading up to this game. This Packers D line is obnoxiously good and the Bears seem unprepared for any kind of stunts.
Tyrique Stevenson’s in-bounds tackle was as good as pick
Terrell Smith barely missed a glory moment in the end zone on the Packers last drive of the first half, but the other rookie cornerback made up for it on the next play, stopping Dontayvian Wicks’ momentum in bounds and forcing the clock to run out while the Packers were in field goal range.
It’s halftime, and the Bears are only down 1
But they look outmatched. The Bears are going to have to close this game stronger than they started it. I suppose it’s a great opportunity to prove they can...
A little too fast Eddie
In an ominous first play of the second half, Eddie Jackson ran right past Dontayvion Wicks in the backfield, allowing him to continue for a 9 yard gain instead of being stopped at the line of scrimmage. I can relate to being eager to bring that Packer down, but Jackson’s enthusiasm burned him there.
It’s not just a great title for a football-themed romantic comedy, it’s the result of another great play by rookie Tyrique Stevenson who knocked the ball out of the scrambling quarterback’s hands with his helmet and gave the Bears a jolt of hope in the 3rd quarter.
I’m loving this run for zero to 2 yards on second and long plan
It’s just such a comfortably familiar sight for the Bears. Don’t give me false hope. I don’t need it. 3rd and long is where we belong.
Moore and Kmet ignite the Bears passing game
In back to back plays, Fields connected with the two top Bears receivers for good gains, bringing the Bears from 3rd and 7 in their own territory to the red zone. A flash of hope early in the 4th quarter. Could this be the statement 4th quarter comeback we’ve been waiting to see from Fields?
Not yet. The next two plays were a well-defended end zone pass to Tonyan and an interceptable end zone pass to Kmet and the Bears settled for a field goal.
And a too-easy Packers scoring drive...
It was basically just huge RAC on a wide open throw to Jayden Reed. The Bears 4th quarter defense is playing the hits.
Has Tony Romo been watching the NFL this season?
After a late hit, he foolishly commented, “ooh, that’s going to be a penalty.” At this point, calling a late hit on Fields would clearly fall into the “too little too late” category.
A fun development on this particular one is the non-penalty hit resulted in Fields head hitting the ground and the independent neurologist pulling Fields out of the game for a play in the most important drive of the game. And apparently Tyson Bagent is sick, so Nathan Peterman graced us with handoff duties for a play.
I choose to believe that play would have been a touchdown if Fields had been in.
In a shocking development, the Bears don’t mount a 4th quarter comeback
And there you have it: the 2023 Chicago Bears.
The Bears were out of playoff contention. As fun as it would have been to knock the Packers out, the most valuable thing the Bears organization could get out of this game is insight into the big decisions coming forward. If I’m being honest, a lucky win could have set this franchise on the wrong trajectory. The Packers were the better team today, and the Bears warts were on full display.
Ryan Poles has a lot of work to do.
Check out our final postgame show here...