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Good morning, Chicago.
The Bears won a 16-13 decision over the Panthers last night at Soldier Field in a game I promise to never speak of again after these 10 quick thoughts …
- Everyone is saying this was an ugly win — and everyone is right. But please consider the alternative. As bad as the Bears are, the Panthers are still a tier below and there’s no way the Bears could have lost it considering the draft implications.
- Credit also goes to the Bears for the things they did right. The defense sacked Bryce Young three times. It didn’t allow a touchdown. The offense didn’t commit a single turnover just a few days after five giveaways to the Saints. This game was always about that Panthers draft pick, but if you’re looking for anything to take for posterity, there you have it.
- That said, I’m really glad to have this Sunday off from Bears football. It’s been a long 10 weeks so far …
- Tyson Bagent was 20-of-33 for 162 yards and no touchdowns. A serviceable effort that did the trick against a bad team, but nothing that would’ve worked against 3/4ths of the league and nothing an NFL fanbase should have to watch weekly in 2023.
- The Bears will never regret not selecting Bryce Young with last year’s No. 1 pick.
- Eight pressures for Montez Sweat according to Next Gen Stats, the most for a Bear since Robert Quinn in 2020. But the real way you know he was effective was that we heard names of defensive linemen we haven’t heard all season. Yannick Ngakoue, come on down!
- Kyler Gordon’s Spidey senses were tingling on Thursday night. By far the best game of his still young career and the type you want to see from the Bears young players these last two months of the season.
- Worse decision: Matt Eberflus not going for two when up five after D’Onta Foreman’s touchdown or Frank Reich sending Eddy Pineiro for a 59-yard field goal? (Hint: The answer rhymes with goose.)
- From DJ Moore to Andy Dalton to D’Onta Foreman to Pineiro, there were a number of players who could’ve had a big moment against their former team. So of course it was the Bears old friend Ihmir Smith-Marsette recording the biggest one with a 76-yard punt touchdown return.
- This is not a Bears thought, but it went through my mind all night as we watched the game at Joe’s On Weed Street.
More coverage from CHGO Bears:
• The CHGO Bears Crew did the postgame pod live at Joe’s
• Brian Urlacher joined us for an entertaining pregame
• Nicholas Moreano reported from a happy Bears locker room
• Adam Hoge and Co. weighed in with their instant reactions
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