Chicago Bears quarterback Justin Fields reached 1,000 rushing yards for the season and the Bears defense had three takeaways Sunday at Soldier Field.
But neither was enough to stop the Eagles from recording their 13th victory of the year.
Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts passed for 315 yards and ran for 61 to fuel a 25-20 win over the Bears. It was the seventh straight loss for the 3-11 Bears.
Fields finished with 95 rushing yards on 15 carries. He also completed 14 of 21 passes for 152 yards and two touchdowns.
He became the third quarterback in NFL history to rush for 1,000 yards in a season, joining Michael Vick and Lamar Jackson. He reached the mark on a 1-yard carry in the fourth quarter.
The Eagles scored on their opening drive of the second half on Hurts’ 1-yard touchdown run to pull to a 17-6 lead.
They failed to increase their lead midway through the fourth quarter when kicker Jake Elliott’s 38-yard field-goal attempt bounced off the right upright and out.
But they sealed the win with another Hurts 1-yard touchdown run midway through the fourth quarter. Hurts also ran in on the two-point conversion attempt for a 25-13 lead.
Bears cornerback Kyler Gordon and safety DeAndre Houston-Carson had interceptions in the first half, but the Bears didn’t score off either.
In the third quarter, the Bears scored following their third takeaway of the game when Mike Pennel forced Miles Sanders to fumble and Gordon recovered it. Three plays later, the Bears scored on Fields’ 10-yard touchdown pass to David Montgomery to cut the Eagles’ lead to 17-13.
Fields threw his second touchdown pass with 2:43 to play in the fourth quarter. He hit Byron Pringle with a 35-yard pass to cut the Eagles’ lead to 25-20.
The Bears suffered multiple injuries during the game. Right guard Teven Jenkins (neck), wide receiver Equanimeous St. Brown (concussion), linebacker Jack Sanborn (ankle) and cornerback Jaylon Johnson (ribs) all left the game.
Here’s how Week 15 unfolded.
Bears wide receivers Chase Claypool and N’Keal Harry are inactive against the Eagles.
Claypool, who has a knee injury, already was declared out Friday. Harry is dealing with a back issue and was listed as questionable Friday, but he will not play.
With Darnell Mooney on injured reserve, that leaves the Bears with wide receivers Equanimeous St. Brown, Byron Pringle, Dante Pettis, Velus Jones Jr. and Nsimba Webster.
The Bears elevated Webster and tight end Jake Tonges from the practice squad Saturday. Tight end Trevon Wesco is inactive with a calf injury.
Also inactive for the Bears are right tackle Larry Borom (knee), quarterback Tim Boyle, defensive lineman Justin Layne and offensive lineman Ja’Tyre Carter.
The Weather Channel forecast for Sunday in Chicago calls for considerable cloudiness early with a decrease in clouds later in the day. The high will be 26 degrees with west winds at 10 to 20 mph.
The Packers played in the NFL’s coldest game, referred to as “The Ice Bowl”: 13 degrees below zero on Dec. 31, 1967. The Bears are 6-4 during their 10 coldest games at Soldier Field since they began playing their home games there in 1971 — including 3 wins and 2 losses against the Packers.
Halftime: Eagles 10, Bears 6
The Bears intercepted Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts twice in the first half, but the Eagles still led 10-6 at halftime. Kyler Gordon and DeAndre Houston Carson had the takeaways, but the Bears didn’t capitalize on either play by scoring.
Hurts completed 8 of 16 passes for 139 yards and also had seven carries for 40 yards and a 22-yard touchdown in the final minute of the half.
Bears quarterback Justin Fields rushed for 81 yards on 11 carries to pull within 14 yards of 1,000 rushing yards for the season. He would be just the third quarterback in NFL history to reach that mark, along with Michael Vick and Lamar Jackson.
Fields also completed 8 of 12 passes for 81 yards and was sacked five times.
Fields broke free for a 39-yard run midway through the second quarter, and David Montgomery followed with a 9-yard touchdown run. Bears kicker Cairo Santos missed the extra point, so the Bears led 6-3. Santos has missed extra points in 3 of the last 5 games.
Santos’ miss added a layer of questions to the Bears’ decision on their next drive.
After Houston-Carson intercepted Hurts and returned it 18 yards to the Eagles 25-yard line, the Bears lost yardage on a Fields fumble and a Fields sack on separate plays..
The Bears had fourth-and-27 at the 31-yard line but they passed up a 49-yard field-goal attempt and instead opted to punt, with Trenton Gill landing the punt at the 9.
The Eagles took a 3-0 first lead on Jake Elliott’s 32-yard field goal with 11:50 to play in the second quarter. Bears cornerback Jaylon Johnson had a nice pass breakup against A.J. Brown in the end zone on second down to help hold the Eagles to the field goal.
Gordon made his second interception of the season on a deep pass from Hurts to Brown in the first quarter. Gordon’s takeaway gave the Bears the ball at their own 17-yard line, but they didn’t take advantage of it, stalling when Fields was sacked for a loss of 14 yards on third down.
The Bears went for it on fourth-and-3 at the Eagles 32-yard line on their first drive. But Fields’ pass to Dante Pettis fell incomplete.
The Bears lost two players to injury on the first drive of the game — and another early in the second half.
Bears right guard Teven Jenkins was taken off the field on a stretcher with 12:31 to play in the first quarter.
Jenkins was injured on a 7-yard David Montgomery run and didn’t get up off the field. After medical staff went out to check on him, they strapped him to a stretcher to cart him off the field. Several players and coaches from the Bears sideline went out to the field to watch as they put him on the stretcher.
The Bears said Jenkins is out for the game with a neck injury.
Earlier, wide receiver Equanimeous St. Brown also left with a potential head injury after making a 20-yard catch. He went to the medical tent and then to the locker room.
The Bears said St. Brown was in concussion protocol, and downgraded to out from questionable later in the first quarter.
Bears linebacker Jack Sanborn left the game early in the third quarter with an apparent left leg injury. He limped off the field to the medical tent. He was later ruled out with an ankle injury.
Fields makes history — but then leaves the game
Bears quarterback Justin Fields left the game and went to the locker room midway through the fourth quarter.
Fields stayed down on the ground after an 18-yard run that was negated by a Bears holding penalty. He then walked to the sideline but didn’t go in the medical tent. He walked to the locker room a short time but jogged back to the sideline a few minutes later.
Just a few moments before he left the game, Fields became the third quarterback in NFL history to rush for 1,000 yards in a season. He reached the mark on a 1-yard carry, joining Michael Vick and Lamar Jackson as the only quarterbacks to reach the milestone.
What can the Bears learn from the Eagles? Invest in the lines, admit mistakes — and hope the QB pans out.
The Eagles will offer a good look at how far the Bears have to go to join the small mix of teams in position to complete for a Lombardi Trophy.
You can draw parallels between the organizations. Both have exciting, young dual-threat quarterbacks with the Eagles’ Jalen Hurts an MVP candidate in his third season and the Bears’ Justin Fields coming along in Year 2. Both have head coaches plucked from the Colts staff.
Don’t get carried away making comparisons, though, because the Eagles (12-1) have the best record in the NFL and the Bears (3-10) have the worst in the NFC, which is why the Eagles are 9-point favorites Sunday at Soldier Field.
10 things to watch in the final stretch of the season
If the 2023 NFL draft were held today, the Bears would own the No. 3 pick, positioned either to select one of the biggest stars of the draft class or to shop that selection in a possible trade back that could net general manager Ryan Poles a bounty of valuable draft capital.
It seems unlikely the Bears would climb to the top of the draft board between now and Jan. 8. The 1-11-1 Houston Texans have remaining games against the Chiefs, Tennessee Titans, Jacksonville Jaguars and Indianapolis Colts and might be hard-pressed to win two more times than the Bears do.
Here’s what else to watch as the Bears close out their season, including bowl season and the quest for 3,000.
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