Chicago Bears end losing streak, squeak by the winless Detroit Lions

Photo by Nic Antaya/Getty Images
Photo by Nic Antaya/Getty Images /

The Chicago Bears end their losing streak at five, just squeaking past the Detroit Lions 16-14. It wasn’t pretty, but they did what they needed to do to finally win.

For Thanksgiving Day, Chicago Bears fans are thankful for their team winning. It happened, as they squeaked past the Detroit Lions 16-14. In a battle of two struggling teams (the two combined for three wins 20 games this season) it certainly wasn’t pretty to watch, but the ending sure looked gorgeous.

This time, the offense moved the ball, amassing 378 yards and recording 21 first downs. Quarterback Andy Dalton, filling in for injured starter Justin Fields, threw for 317 yards and a touchdown. The offensive line did a good job of protection, allowing just one sack.

Wide receiver Darnell Mooney had another big game against the Lions. He had 5 catches for 123 yards. He had 5 catches for 125 yards in Week 4 when the teams met up in Chicago.

While all that was well and good, it didn’t translate to points. The Bears came into the game averaging just 16.2 points per game. Despite all of the yards, that average basically went down with the 16 points scored.

Cairo Santos, the hero at the end of the game, missed a field goal attempt earlier in the game and Dalton threw one interception in the end zone and almost had another, also in the end zone, that was dropped.

The same problems of poorly-timed penalties and missed opportunities continue to haunt the Chicago Bears offense.

The Lions struck first in the scoring when Jared Goff connected with Josh Reynolds for a 39-yard touchdown. Reynolds blew past Artie Burns, who started in place of a struggling Kindle Vildor.

Early in the second quarter, the Bears got on the board when Santos hit a 28-yard field goal. On their next drive, the Bears got their touchdown. Dalton connected with Mooney for 52 yards. On the next play, he hit tight end Jimmy Graham for 17 yards and the score. Then, with four seconds left in the first half, Santos hit a 43-yard field goal to send the Bears into the locker room with a 13-7 lead.

Then the second half began and things broke down for both teams. It was an ugly half of football to watch. On each team’s first two drives of the third quarter, the Lions gained 11 total yards while the Bears gained 50. Of the Bears’ total, 42 came on a drive that ended on a Santos missed 53-yard field goal attempt.

On the Lions’ third drive in the third quarter, they found a rhythm. They went 64 yards on 9 plays and scored a touchdown to take a 14-13 lead. The defense, which had three consecutive collapses in the fourth quarter, looked like it was starting its collapse earlier. Chicago showed hardly any resistance.

After the Bears offense punted again, the Lions went on a drive that started late in the third and went into the fourth. Chicago Bears Nation watched intently, to see if the defense laid down again. This time, however, it was the Lions who made life difficult for itself. That happens a lot to a team that comes into Week 12 winless.

The Lions started the drive very nicely. They gained 37 yards on just three plays. It looked like the Bears’ defense was laying down again.

Then the Lions did what the Lions usually do. They committed three straight penalties, first a false start then two holding calls. After an incomplete pass, the Lions faced a third and 32. While the Bears’ defense was shaky, it did prevent a first down that far away. The Lions punted and never saw the ball again.

The offense was able to come through late in the game. This time, it was the Bears playing the role of heartbreakers. They took over with 8:30 left in the game. They marched 69 yards, made six first downs, including two on third down. The third-down conversions were big because they only had three the entire game before that drive. The drive ended with another Santos 28-yard field goal as time expired. With that, the Bears ended their five-game losing streak.

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It was great to see the offense take over and take the ball and not let the opposing offense back on the field. I’m sure this is what head coach Matt Nagy wanted to see. With the problems surrounding them this week, it was nice for it to finally happen. People may say it was against the Lions, but a win is a win.