3 and out: Breaking down the Bears’ 34-22 win over the Lions
Breaking down the Bears’ 34-22 NFC North win over the Detroit Lions on Sunday at Soldier Field.
THREE MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
1. The Bears put the Lions in a hole early with touchdowns on their first two drives. The second score, a 36-yard TD from QB Mitchell Trubisky to WR Allen Robinson down the right side, was a perfect throw from the young QB, who completed nine of his first 10 attempts.
2. Khalil Mack took down Lions QB Matthew Stafford in the third quarter for his first sack since Sept. 30. Of course, Mack has been injured for much of that time, but the Bears will need more big plays from their star edge rusher down the stretch.
3. Already up 19-0, nickelback Bryce Callahan essentially put the game away with his second-quarter interception. The takeaway set up the Bears with good field position, which they converted into their fourth TD.
THREE THINGS THAT WORKED
1. Robinson’s return. It’s not like the offense was inept with Robinson sidelined. Sunday just showed how dangerous the Bears can be with their top wide receiver at 100 percent. Robinson, who went for 133 yards and two TDs, gives opposing defenses another weapon to deal with.
2. Callahan’s defense. Is there a defensive back more underrated than Callahan? The soon-to-be free agent continues to make plays. He came up with an interception, a sack and was excellent in coverage against the Lions.
3. Pressuring Stafford. The Bears didn’t quite match the Vikings’ 10 sacks from a week ago, but they still put in work against Stafford. Vic Fangio’s unit finished with six sacks, including a pair by Mack and another from rookie LB Roquan Smith.
THREE THINGS THAT DIDN’T
1. Cody Parkey’s accuracy. The Bears’ never-ending quest to find a reliable kicker doesn’t appear to be coming to a close anytime soon. We have to imagine Parkey’s job is in danger after he missed two extra points and a pair of field goals Sunday.
2. Running effectively. They didn’t need a run game early with the Lions allowing the Bears to do whatever they wanted through the air. Still, it was disappointing they were unable to get more going on the ground with the outcome decided in the second half.
3. Getting the challenge flag out in time. We’re admittedly reaching here, but it’s not like the Bears did much wrong Sunday. Lions WR Kenny Golladay clearly fumbled in the second quarter. Detroit hurried up to the line and was able to snap the football before Bears coach Matt Nagy was able to challenge the call.
We’ll get a chance to see if the Bears are real contenders for the NFC North title as they host the Minnesota Vikings in primetime Sunday evening.