The tank is on. Trevor Siemian did his part. So did the Met Life Stadium turf, unfortunately. The Chicago Bears lost to the New York Jets in a game we can all pretend never happened. Let’s get to the grades.
Siemian said he was embarrassed that he was nearly replaced by Nathan Peterman due to an oblique injury suffered in pregame. Credit to Siemian for battling his way through at less than 100 percent. He finished the day 14-for-25 for 179 yards — a fine, mediocre performance for a Bears backup quarterback in the rain against a good Jets defense. Trevor did his job on a tank win Sunday and even got a nice highlight for his efforts with a touchdown throw to Byron Pringle.
Running back: A
David Montgomery got the CHGO Bears show star of the game for his grit. Monty fought for extra yards like he always does and showed some elusiveness as well. 14 carries for 79 yards comes out to a 5.6 ypc average against a good Jets defense. Add in three catches for 34 more yards and you have another performance worthy of a contract extension come the offseason. Darrynton Evans flashed as well in the we-miss-Khalil-Herbert role: Nine carries for 34 yars and one reception for 33.
Wide Receivers / Tight End: C+
Welcome to the team Byron Pringle. Two tough catches showing the NFL world that Pringle ain’t dead yet after an injury-plagued 2022. Darnell Mooney getting hurt blocking is a major bummer and it looks like he’s going to miss the rest of the season. Cole Kmet had a drop to go with his three catches. Chase Claypool led the Bears in receiving yards (51) and in looking confused on where to be in the offense once again. The help wanted ad remains out.
Offensive Line: B
Larry Borom replaced a banged-up Riley Rieff at RT and nearly got Trevor Siemian killed letting Bryce Huff go untouched for one of the two Jet sacks. Let’s call that one a miscommunication perhaps. But giving up only two sacks is a win for the O Line who benefited by having Teven Jenkins back. Right tackle will need to be addressed in the off-season or perhaps left tackle with Braxton Jones switching sides. All things considered Siemian was running for his life less than expected.
Defensive line/linebacker: D
Armon Watts had a sack. Jack Sanborn had 15(!) tackles. That was the slight good news albeit most of Jackhammer Sanborn’s tackles were down the field on a very comfortable day for Jets QB Mike White who earned himself another couple of opportunities. Nicholas Morrow missed tackles. We didn’t notice Al-Quadin Muhammed nor did he make the box score which is hard to do. Dominique Robinson had two tackles but never got close to the quarterback. Justin Jones was called for holding. Help. Please.
Garrett Wilson has a new favorite team to play against. Wilson shook Kindle Vildor into next season for his first TD catch on his way to 95 yards and two TDs. The Bears missed Kyler Gordon and Jaquan Brisker. Jaylon Johnson had a rare pass deflection — side note I still don’t think Johnson is healthy. Eddie Jackson getting hurt in a non-contact injury really sucks. Jackson still doesn’t like to form tackle and or tackle but he has had a much better year and has stepped up his leadership big time. Elijah Hicks would get an opportunity if Jackson is out, but having Jackson there for Brisker and Gordon is more important.
Special Teams: A
A quiet, perfect day for Cairo Santos, Trenton Gill and Dante Pettis. Even Velus Jones did right by letting kicks sails into the end zone and make a special teams tackle. This group played their part of complementary football to the best of their abilities.
This grade is more a residual effect of Justin Fields getting hurt last week on a forever unnecessary play call. Luke Getsy showed he hadn’t learned much calling for a QB sneak for Siemian when his backup QB was dealing with an oblique injury. For a moment the offense looked… better / fine with the ball coming out quicker. Getsy got Claypool involved early but not late. Alan Williams saw his defense flash but give up too many easy catch and throw, day at the beach moments for Mike White and company. This staff can only be asked to do so much and at the end of the day not playing Justin Fields was their best decision of the day.
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