Chargers pound the Bears on Sunday Night
Jonathan Hui - USA Today Sports

Chargers pound the Bears on Sunday Night

by - Senior Writer -

LOS ANGELES - Heading into their matchup against the Los Angeles Chargers (3-4) on Sunday night, the Chicago Bears (2-6) had an opportunity to win their second consecutive game and move ahead of the Green Bay Packers in the standings. As expected, Tyson Bagent was under center once again as Justin Fields continued to nurse his dislocated thumb.

Despite their record, the Chargers are a very talented team, and it has always been an enigma how they have been this inconsistent, given the weapons they have. Justin Herbert is a legitimate franchise QB, Keenan Allen and Austin Ekeler are playmakers, and they have a defense capable of making life difficult on many teams. All that came into play on Sunday as the Chargers took down the Bears on primetime 30-13.

As if facing the Chargers without their no. 1 starter wasn't hard enough, Los Angeles has been a house of horrors for the Bears as they are now 3-14 in Los Angeles all time, including 0-7 since 1987. Bagent continued to show signs of growth with 232 yards on 25-37 passing, but with no touchdowns and two interceptions, he didn't help himself out too much. Herbert, on the other hand, was dialed in as he completed 31-40 passes for 298 yards with three touchdowns and no interceptions. He also helped the Chargers score on their first five possessions as they put this one away by halftime.

No one will ever tell you that one play can change the outcome of a game, but you have to wonder what could have been with the Bears opening possession. Bagent kicked off his game with a bang as he hooked up with Darnell Mooney for a massive 41-yard completion that moved the ball to the Chargers 38 yardline. Mooney wasn't touched on the play popped up and raced to the endzone, but the referees blew the play dead for whatever reason. That took the air right out of Chicago as they punted the ball away shortly after and came away with no points.

It was at that moment when the Chargers put together one of their best drives of the season, as they needed 10 plays to go 92 yards while taking up nearly half of the quarter in the process. Allen played a huge role in that early on with three catches right away, with Ekeler also starting to get involved. Ekeler provided the biggest play on that drive as he took the quick out from Herbert and followed his blockers for the 39-yard touchdown to put the Chargers in front for good, 7-0.

A quick three and out for the Bears offense gave the ball right back to the Chargers offense who contined to make things look easy. A couple of short passes to Josh Palmer opened things up before another big play from Ekeler moved the ball inside the Bears 15. Four plays later saw Herbert pick up his second TD in as many possessions as Simi Fehoko hauled in a nine-yard completion to extend the lead to 14-0.

In danger of getting blown out in the first quarter, Bagent was counting on rookie Roschon Johnson to get things rolling as he continued to move the chains. Bagent avoided disaster earlier in the drive with a fumble recovered by the offense, but an interception a few plays later killed the drive and gave the Chargers a short field where Cameron Dicker banged home a 43-yard field goal to push the lead to 17-0.

It may have taken nearly the entire first half, but the Bears offense finally got on the board in the second quarter after putting together a near eight-minute drive to move the ball 70 yards. Finding DJ Moore for 18 yards did help, as did a couple of short completions to Cole Kmet. Another completion to Moore moved the ball inside the red zone, which helped set things up for Darrynton Evans, whose 11-yard touchdown run made things 17-7. Los Angeles answered that drive with one more TD of their own as Herbert fired his third TD pass of the half to Donald Parham to put the Chargers in front 24-7 at the half.

The second half was more of the same, at least early on, where the Chargers made it five for five in scoring drives to start the half off with Dicker knocking home his second field goal. Following punts by both teams and a turnover on downs by the Bears, Dicker banged home his third field goal in as many attempts with the Chargers opening up the 30-7 lead.

Not only did the Bears turn it over on downs twice in the second half, but Bagent also threw his second interception as things continued to worsen for the Bears. That was until their defense came up with a stop as Zacch Pickens forced a fumble, only to have TJ Edwards fall on it to give the ball back to the Bears. Chicago then put together a 10-play, 40-yard drive that was capped off by a Bagent one-yard TD run. Those were the game's final points as the Bears dropped another game 30-13.

It has been a long time since Kmet had the kind of game he had in this one, as he led the Bears with 10 receptions for 79 yards. Moore added 55 yards on four receptions, with Mooney having 41. As expected, running the ball was difficult against the Chargers, as they have one of the best-run defenses for a reason. Foreman paced the team with 34 yards on nine carries, with Johnson adding 21. The Chargers had an equally tough time running the ball as Ekeler was held to under 30 yards on the ground, but did add 94 yards receiving with his one score.

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