Bears regrouping again after loss to Lions erases good vibe
CHICAGO (AP) — The good vibe surrounding the Chicago Bears didn’t last long.
They went from busting out to breaking down, from running away with their most lopsided victory in five years to stalling in a 20-10 loss to the Detroit Lions on Saturday.
Chicago has dropped six of seven and hit double digits in losses in all three seasons under embattled coach John Fox. Even beating lowly Cleveland at home next week hardly is a sure thing.
“Two games left. Just have to finish,” cornerback Prince Amukamara said. “I mean, no matter how great it gets, no matter how ugly it gets, we have two games. And, like, the main theme is just finish and finish well.”
The loss wiped out whatever good feelings the Bears (4-10) generated the previous week against the Bengals, when they went off for 482 yards and pounded Cincinnati by 26 for their most lopsided victory since 2012.
But considering where the Bengals and Lions are at, the result was hardly a shocker.
Cincinnati looked like a team that had no interest in playing coming off a loss to Pittsburgh that crushed its playoff hopes and gutted its defense. The Lions still hope to reach the postseason, and they need to win their remaining games.
For the Bears, there was plenty of blame to go around after their latest loss.
Whether it was rookie Mitchell Trubisky’s erratic play, a stagnant run game, mounting penalties and more questionable decisions by Fox, Chicago showed why it’s last in the NFC North and 0-5 against the division. The Bears have also dropped nine of 10 against the Lions.
“Lack of rhythm on offense, penalties,” Trubisky said. “We got to eliminate penalties and then me taking care of the football, so we just need to do better at those things.
“Take care of the ball in red zone, be better on third down, obviously, and just execute better on offense all the way around. So, last week we had a little juice, executed, had things rolling. Today, it seemed like the opposite.”
Trubisky set career highs in completions (31), attempts (46) and yards passing (314). But his three interceptions were also a high for him.
He overthrew Kendall Wright on play action, and Darius Slay picked off the pass before going out of bounds. Trubisky tried to hit Dontrelle Inman in double coverage in the end zone, but Quandre Diggs stepped in front for the interception .
It didn’t help that the Bears committed 13 penalties, that they ran for just 43 yards and that their coach once again left himself open to second-guessing.
Fox, who is 13-33 with Chicago, decided to punt rather than go for it on a fourth-and-1 at the Chicago 45 trailing 6-0 early in the second quarter. Matthew Stafford then led the Lions on a 92-yard touchdown drive that included a 58-yard heave to Marvin Jones on a third-and-18 from the Detroit 30.
The Bears chose not to take a shot at the end zone after recovering a fumble at the Lions 27 near the end of the first half. Trubisky threw a short pass before Mike Nugent kicked a 41-yard field goal, cutting it to 13-3.
Fox also opted not to try an onside kick after Trubisky’s TD pass to Benny Cunningham cut it to 20-10 with 2:32 remaining. The Bears got the ball back with 2:07 left.
But Trubisky got picked off by Slay on a miscommunication with Daniel Brown in the closing minute after Chicago drove to the Detroit 25.
“The better team won,” safety Eddie Jackson said. “They came out here and they played better than us and they got the win. We just came out short today.”