Bears struggle offensively in loss to Saints


by - Senior Writer -
Chicago Bears starting quarterback Mitchell Trubisky returned to action but was unable to lead the Bears to victory. (Credit: Matt Marton-USA TODAY Sports)
Chicago Bears starting quarterback Mitchell Trubisky returned to action but was unable to lead the Bears to victory. (Credit: Matt Marton-USA TODAY Sports)

CHICAGO — With a deceptive final score of 36-25, the loss suffered by the Chicago Bears (3-3) at the hands of the New Orleans Saints (6-1) on Sunday was fairly one-sided. Continuing to struggle offensively, which has been a theme of the Bears' season, Chicago failed to score an offensive touchdown until the 2:31 mark of the fourth quarter. By then, the Saints boasted a comfortable lead, with the Bears producing a pair of garbage-time touchdowns to make their defeat more respectable. Quarterback Mitchell Trubisky returned to action for the Bears after missing the previous game due to a dislocated non-throwing shoulder and went 34-of-54 for 251 yards and two touchdowns through the air. However, the Saints racked up 424 yards of offense and came away with a commanding win at Soldier Field.

The Week 7 matchup followed a Week 6 bye for Chicago, and the Bears were rather rusty for most of the game. Early on, the Saints took a 2-0 lead when a blocked punt carried out of the back of the end zone for a safety. Later in the first quarter, Saints quarterback Teddy Bridgewater, who continued to excel while filling in for the injured Drew Brees, connected with tight end Josh Hill for a 7-yard touchdown pass. The short touchdown drive was set up by the Saints recovering a fumble by Bears wideout Anthony Miller, a ruling that was made after a Saints challenge. Chicago suffered two lost fumbles on the day, with the other one occurring when rookie Bears running back David Montgomery coughed up the football on one of his two carries in the contest.

Quickly responding after falling down 9-0, the Bears pulled back to within two points mere minutes after Hill's touchdown catch. Bears return specialist Cordarrelle Patterson ran the ensuing kickoff back to the house on a 102-yard touchdown return that served as the first kickoff return for a touchdown at Soldier Field since legendary return man Devin Hester pulled one off in 2011. The Bears took the lead thanks to a 46-yard field goal by kicker Eddy Pineiro early in the second quarter. Midway through the period, Saints kicker Will Lutz put New Orleans back in front with a 39-yard field goal, leading to a 12-10 halftime score. The Saints dominated the third quarter, though, with two touchdown drives of over 70 yards resulting in New Orleans going up 26-10.

Saints running back Latavius Murray received the starting nod in place of an ailing Alvin Kamara, and he recorded 150 all-purpose yards and two rushing touchdowns. Murray's first scoring play came on a 3-yard carry in the third quarter. His second was a 4-yard rush in the fourth quarter that effectively put a bow on the Saints' win. In between Murray's two scores, jack-of-all-trade Saints quarterback Taysom Hill threw a 4-yard touchdown pass to Bridgewater on a trick play, and Lutz tacked on a 30-yard field goal. The Bears' offense finally scored when wide receiver Allen Robinson II hauled in a 7-yard touchdown pass from Trubisky with under three minutes left to play. Trubisky then converted the subsequent 2-point conversion via a pass to tight end Adam Shaheen.

As a result of the first onside-kick recovery by a kicking team this season, the Bears added another touchdown in the final minute of action. After recovering an onside kick, the Bears manufactured a scoring drive that ended with wideout Javon Wims securing a 6-yard touchdown throw from Trubisky. Soon afterward, the Saints finished off their 36-25 victory and handed the Bears their second straight loss. Robinson led all receivers with 10 catches and registered 87 receiving yards. The Bears were limited to a meager 17 rushing yards, and the team's glaring lack of a run game was a primary reason behind the lackluster offensive showing that plagued Chicago for most of the game.

New Orleans Saints at Chicago Bears
Oct 20, 2019 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH SCORE
New Orleans Saints (6-1) 9 3 14 10 36
Chicago Bears (3-3) 7 3 0 15 25

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