3 takeaways from the week 3 loss of bears | Launderer report


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    David Dermer / Associated press

    There was a sense of excitement around the Chicago Bears heading into week three. While no fan base should be happy with an injury, Andy Dalton’s knee injury meant rookie Justin Fields would make his first NFL start in Cleveland against the Browns.

    The excitement surrounding Fields and his starting debut quickly turned to dismay as the Ohio State product was completely overwhelmed by the teeming Browns defense. Fields finished with just 68 passing yards. He was sacked nine times for 67 yards. That means Chicago only scored a single yard pass against Cleveland.

    The Bears averaged just 1.1 yards per game, the second lowest average of any team this century, according to CBS Sports, in a tweet that was retweeted by Bears tight end Jimmy Graham (h / t Jim Reineking of United States today).

    Frankly speaking, Fields’ debut was a disaster. It has become clear that the former Buckeyes star is just not ready to be a quality NFL starter. Here’s what else we learned in Chicago’s 26-6 loss to Cleveland.

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    David Dermer / Associated press

    Rookie quarterbacks are going to have bad days, and this one isn’t entirely on Fields. Yes, the Ohio State product held the ball too long and didn’t seem sure what he was seeing. However, head coach Matt Nagy and his team appeared to have no real plans to make the rookie’s life easier.

    Instead of using Field’s legs, the Bears only allowed him to run three times. Instead of giving him screens and easy swing passes, they forced Fields to watch the pitch and attack the secondary. When it became clear that Fields was going to face pressure in almost any game, there was no change in the protection plan.

    To a large extent, Nagy and Co. failed Fields.

    “That’s the fucking problem here because there is no adjustment during the game,” former Bears defensive end Alex Brown told NBC Sports Chicago. Football after-show (h / t Alex shapiro by NBC Sports Chicago).

    If the Bears are hoping to see Fields succeed as a rookie quarterback, they need to do a much better job to make his job easier. This means, first and foremost, adjusting the attack according to one’s strengths and weaknesses.

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    David Richard / Associated press

    The Bears plan to return to Dalton once the veteran is healthy. However, it doesn’t matter who’s in the middle if the offensive line behaves the way it did on Sunday.

    Myles Garrett set a new Browns franchise record with 4.5 sacks on Sunday. With nine sacks taken against Cleveland, the Bears quarterbacks have now been sacked 15 times in three weeks. The pressure came early, often and throughout most of the contests.

    Unfortunately, the line’s issues weren’t limited to pass protection. He struggled to open up running lanes, which led Nagy to abandon the race against Cleveland – another bad decision with Fields under center.

    David Montgomery ran just 10 times for 34 yards on Sunday. For the season, the Bears rank only 20th in rushing yards. If the line can’t hold up in protection and the offense is going to remain one-dimensional, Chicago has virtually no hope of achieving offensive success this season.

    Maybe things will improve when and if rookie tackle Teven Jenkins returns from back surgery, but for now, Chicago’s offensive line is a major handicap.

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    David Dermer / Associated press

    If we’re looking for one bright spot in Sunday’s loss – and we are – it’s that Chicago’s pass rush did its part. Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield has been sacked five times and has been under constant pressure.

    It was a positive theme for the opposing quarterbacks, who were collectively sacked 11 times in three weeks.

    This is an encouraging development for a defense that produced just 35 sacks in 2020, despite having star passer Khalil Mack in the fold. Another positive development is that Robert Quinn is finally making his presence felt.

    Quinn was Chicago’s prized free agent acquisition in 2020. However, he only gave up two sacks in his debut season with the Bears. In three weeks this year, he already has four sacks and six quarter presses, according to Professional football benchmark.

    If Chicago is to win games this season, they’ll need to play solid defense and force opposing quarterbacks to make mistakes. Fortunately, the pass rush seems up to the challenge.

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