Bagent impressive in Bears loss to Colts
Trevor Ruszkowski - USA Today Sports

Bagent impressive in Bears loss to Colts

by - Senior Writer -

INDIANAPOLIS - After several days of joint practices, things got real on Saturday as the Chicago Bears and Indianapolis Colts battle at Lucas Oil Stadium. While most fans expected to see Justin Fields for at least a few series, Matt Eberflus and company chose to rest their start QB and most of their starters and decided to go with a backup-type game.

While there were plenty of promising moments throughout the contest, the fourth quarter was the Bear's demise as the Colts outscored Chicago 17-7 in the final 15 minutes to pick up the 24-17 victory. Many expect PJ Walker to be Field's backup this season, but don't count out Nathan Peterman, who had a solid day under center. Peterman completed 10-18 passes for 113 yards with one score as he led the Bears passing attack.

Throw in a rushing attack that combined for 134 yards, including Roschon Johnson and his 32 yards on seven carries; the Bears continued to show the offensive balance they are looking for as they look to be more unpredictable this season. When it came to the Colts, Gardner Minshew and Sam Ehlinger had their way with the Bears secondary as they combined to go 22-29 for 220 yards and pair of scores. Ehlinger also showed off the wheels with a team-high 60 yards on the ground while also tallying one TD.

After a sluggish first quarter that saw both teams combine for less than 100 yards and no points, things began to open up in the second. Sparked by a 13-play, 74-yard drive that took nearly six minutes off the clock, the Colts struck first to grab a 7-0 lead. Minshew played a significant role by distributing passes to Josh Downs and Pharaoh Brown as they started to move the ball more consistently. Another first-down pass to Juwann Winfree helped move the ball inside the red zone, where Winfree would finish off the drive with a four-yard TD reception.

All it took for the Bears to tie things up was one possession, but it was lengthy. Chicago needed 17 plays to drive 92 yards while chewing more than nine minutes off the clock. Those drives can be defensive killers, and the Bears would love to have more of them this season. Johnson kept the defense on their toes while Tyson Bagent started to find Dante Pettis and Nsimba Webster in the passing game.

With Johnson and Bagent continuing to display a great balanced offensive attack, Bagent used his legs to finish off the drive as he scrambled from two yards out to tie things up 7-7 at the half. Looking to keep their momentum going in the second half, both offenses turned the ball over on downs on their opening possession, but it was the Bears who capitalized as Cairo Santos drilled a 50-yard field goal to make things 10-7.

Those were the only points of the third quarter as the Bears defense forced another turnover on downs to help give the ball back to the Chicago offense. Rookie Bralen Trahan played a considerable role by breaking up a third-down pass to help set up fourth down. Immediately following that turnover on downs was the Bears displaying their quick-strike offense as they moved the ball 58 yards on seven plays needing just over three minutes to get it done.

While the rushing attack didn't do much on that drive, the arm of Peterman did the most damage as he hooked up with Daurice Fountain for 35 yards to put the Bears in front 17-7. Those would be the final points of the night for Chicago, as it would come down to their defense to hold that lead. The defense was an issue for Chicago last season, and throughout the fourth quarter, you started to see those issues come to the surface yet again.

First, it was a 42-yard strike from Ehlinger to James Washington to put the ball inside the Bear's five-yard line before Ehlinger used his legs to make things 17-14. Another three-and-out from the Bears offense, where they amassed -2 yards, gave the ball to the Colts as their offense continued to find their groove. A few short yardage plays may have started off that drive, but another monster pass from Ehlinger to DJ Montgomery put the ball in Bears territory while a costly personal foul penalty added 15 more yards to move the ball inside the 20.

Three plays later, it was Jake Funk capping off the drive from four yards out as the Colts took the lead for good, 21-17. What looked to be a promising start to their next possession, Robert Bums put the ball on the turf after a 12-yard run to give the ball back to the Colts. They proceeded to bang home a 35-yard field goal to take a 24-17 with one minute to go.

Down to their last shot as an offense, Peterman did his part to lead the Bears into the endzone as he hooked up Fountain for 27 yards to start things off before hitting Isaiah Ford for 24 more yards to bring the ball to the 25-yard line. Fountain had a great game, especially during the second half, as he led the Bears with 86 yards on five receptions. Facing a third and 10 situation, Peterman was under duress and was dropped for a sack as time expired in the Bears 24-17 loss.

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