Bears force five turnovers, cruise to victory over Redskins


by - Senior Writer -
The Chicago Bears' defense dominated for most of the game, forcing Washington Redskins quarterback Case Keenum into making several crucial mistakes. (Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports)
The Chicago Bears' defense dominated for most of the game, forcing Washington Redskins quarterback Case Keenum into making several crucial mistakes. (Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports)

LANDOVER, Md. — Turnovers were the ultimate difference makers in the first-ever meeting on Monday Night Football between the Chicago Bears (2-1) and the Washington Redskins (0-3). Forcing five turnovers, one of which was an interception run back for a touchdown, the Bears' defense dominated on Monday, limiting the Redskins to just three points in the first half at FedExField. On the offensive side of the ball for the Bears, wide receiver Taylor Gabriel stole the show by hauling in three touchdown receptions and helping lead the Bears to a 31-15 victory.

On the Redskins' first possession of the night, Washington quarterback Case Keenum was picked off by Bears safety Ha Ha Clinton-Dix, who played for the Redskins last year. Clinton-Dix bolted down the sideline for a 37-yard score that put the Bears up 7-0 at the 9:42 mark of the opening quarter. Chicago scored 21 points in the first half and led 28-3 at the intermission. Bears quarterback Mitchell Trubisky was solid on the evening, as he went 25-of-31 for 231 yards and three touchdowns through the air.

Following a Redskins missed field goal, Trubisky marched the Bears 67 yards down the field on a touchdown drive that was capped off by a 3-yard touchdown pass to Gabriel. Soon afterward, the Bears collected another turnover, with linebacker Khalil Mack forcing a fumble on a strip sack and defensive end Akiem Hicks recovering the football. Three plays later, Gabriel made his second touchdown grab on a 1-yard scoring play.

Keenum's struggles continued after that, leading to Redskins fans in attendance chanting rookie backup quarterback Dwayne Haskins' name. Bears cornerback Kyle Fuller intercepted Keenum, setting the stage for the Bears to go up 28-0. This time, Gabriel corralled his third touchdown snag on an impressive 36-yard dime from Trubisky. Gabriel was initially ruled out of bounds, but a review indicated that he secured the catch before planting both feet inbounds, which culminated in the call being overturned.

The Redskins tacked on a field goal just before halftime but wasted no time in coughing the ball up early in the second half. Clinton-Dix tabbed his second interception deep in Chicago territory and took it 59 yards the other way, putting the Bears just outside the red zone. After kicking the game-winning field goal in Week 2, Bears kicker Eddy Pineiro suffered a pinched nerve in his kicking leg during the buildup to Week 3. A freak weight-room injury, the pinched nerve caused Pineiro to limp onto the field prior to each one of his kicks against the Redskins.

Pineiro was a perfect 4-for-4 on extra-point attempts, but his first field-goal try, which was a 44-yarder in the third quarter, was kicked wide right. Washington answered with its first touchdown drive of the contest, with Keenum connecting with wideout Terry McLaurin for a 15-yard score that was followed by a failed 2-point conversion. Thereafter, a lengthy Bears drive was abruptly ended when Redskins cornerback Josh Norman picked off Trubisky near the goal line, which made a second touchdown drive by Washington possible.

On a fourth-down play from the Bears' 2-yard-line, Redskins wide receiver Paul Richardson Jr. caught a touchdown pass from Keenum, making the score 28-15 in favor of the Bears. The next time that they had the ball, the Redskins were not as fortunate when going for it on fourth down. Keenum attempted a quarterback sneak on a fourth-and-1 from the Chicago 16-yard-line, but Bears linebacker Danny Trevathan stuffed Keenum and forced a fumble that was recovered by Bears safety Eddie Jackson.

Pineiro went on to make a 38-yard field goal with 1:50 remaining, essentially wrapping up the Bears' win. Although Gabriel and Hicks were instrumental to the Bears garnering the 31-15 triumph, neither one of them finished the game, with both players leaving the contest due to injury. Gabriel finished with six catches for 75 yards and became the first Bears player to haul in three touchdown receptions in a single game since Brandon Marshall did so in 2014. On the other side of the ball, Clinton-Dix led all defenders in the contest with seven solo tackles to go along with his two assisted tackles. On the ground, rookie Bears running back David Montgomery was the game's leading rusher, as he carried the ball 13 times for 67 yards.

Chicago Bears at Washington Redskins
Sep 23, 2019 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH SCORE
Chicago Bears (2-1) 7 21 0 3 31
Washington Redskins (0-3) 0 3 6 6 15

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