Nov 27, 2023; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Chicago Bears place kicker Cairo Santos (8) kicks a field goal against the Minnesota Vikings in the second quarter at U.S. Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports
Well that was something.
The Chicago Bears snapped a 12-game NFC North losing streak on Monday night despite not scoring a single touchdown against the Minnesota Vikings. Cairo Santos made four field goals in the 12-10 win, including the 30-yard gamewinner with just 10 seconds remaining.
It was the first time in 30 years that the Bears won a game without scoring a touchdown and moved their overall record to 4-8 heading into the bye week.
Justin Fields had two big fumbles in the fourth quarter, but made the big throw when he needed to, connecting with DJ Moore for a 36-yard gain on third-and-10. Moore had a huge game, catching the ball 10 times for 114 yards.
The Bears also let several opportunities slip by in the first half. Cairo Santos missed his first field goal attempt of the night, the offense could not turn two Joshua Dobbs interceptions into a single point and Jaylon Johnson dropped his second pick-six chance in as many weeks. Combine that with six penalties for 71 yards in the first half and the Bears headed to the locker room tied at 3.
Here are our initial impressions about the loss …
Who needs touchdowns?!? The Bears won their first game since 1993 without scoring touchdowns. Coincidentally, they looked like the 90s Bears Monday night. I’m not sure we learned anything from this one, as Matt Eberflus and Justin Fields will face the same uncertainty about their futures.
Justin Fields had the ball in his hands with just 2:29 left in the fourth quarter and his team down 10-9. Fields, who on the previous two drives fumbled, had one more opportunity to keep his team alive. The Bears’ quarterback led his offense down the field and the biggest play was a strike to DJ Moore over the middle of the field for a gain of 36 yards on third-and-10. That put Cairo Santos well within his range. Santos lined up for the 30-field goal and put it through the uprights to give the Bears their first divisional victory in two years.
Ummm. Well, the Bears found a way to finish a game! Congratulations to Matt Eberflus for finally beating a divisional rival after a year and a half. If you want to nitpick the gameplan, decision making, Fields’ fumbles, inability to score off turnovers — feel free. I would not blame you. It’s warranted. But we have all week for that.
I’m going to take a moment and relish this win. They’ve been hard to come by over the past few years. The Vikings had everything to play for, but the Bears Defense held its own all game long. I haven’t seen a defense in Chicago like that in some time.
When it mattered most, Fields made the biggest throw of the game and led his team to a victory. And for that, I’m thankful.
A win is a … win. This one though feels more like a loss. The play calling was conservative at best. The QB held the ball for a long time and fumbled twice in key spots. But Justin Fields made the throw to DJ Moore on 3rd down to pull victory out of the jaws of disaster. Bears win and they have one more win than last season. The future, remains as murky as ever.
Greg Braggs Jr.
Well, it wasn’t pretty but the Bears under Matt Eberflus have FINALLY won a division game! Last week it was 95 percent fun, percent bad. This week is was 95 percent bad, 5 percent fun. Wins are fun, right? I don’t even know anymore. Seems like today creates more questions than answers about both the coaches and the quarterback. Yes, Justin Fields won the game but those fumbles were bad. Bad, bad. Eberflus seems to have the defense turning the corner with 9 forced turnovers over the last 2 games. Getsy threw about 15 screens on the day. So we’ll call this game a wash in terms of evaluation for anyone earning their jobs for next season.
Why did they have to be so hard? Josh Dobbs giftwrapped the game time and time again with four interceptions yet Justin Fields and the offense couldn’t even come close to a knockout blow. Then Fields tried to give the game to the Vikings with two fumbles in the fourth quarter. In the end, it was the accuracy of Cairo Santos that sends the Bears into their bye week with a win to pair with plenty of questions about Fields and the coaching staff.
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