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3 and out: Bears, Trubisky take step back in loss to Lions

December 17, 2017

Breaking down the Bears’ 20-10 loss to the Detroit Lions Saturday, which clinched their fourth straight season with at least 10 losses.

THREE MOMENTS THAT MATTERED

1. After forcing a fumble to set up a field goal just before halftime, the Bears were primed to cut into their 13-3 deficit to start the second half. Instead, quarterback Mitchell Trubisky was picked off by Darius Slay on the second play of the third quarter, and the Lions then quickly extended their advantage to 20-3.

2. Sam Acho and Akiem Hicks had a chance to bring down Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford on 3rd-and-18, but the veteran escaped the pressure by rolling to the right and throwing up a jump ball to Marvin Jones, who outjumped Eddie Jackson for a 58-yard reception. The big play set up T.J. Jones’ 3-yard touchdown reception a short time later to make it 13-0 Detroit with 6:56 left in the first half.

3. Moments after T.J. Jones gave his team a two-score lead, rookie return man Tarik Cohen took the ensuing kickoff back 90 yards to set the Bears up at Detroit’s 14-yard line. DeAndre Houston-Carson was flagged for holding, however, and the ball came all the way back to Chicago’s 10-yard line.

THREE THINGS THAT WORKED

1. Getting pressure. Lamarr Houston picked up two more sacks and now has four in three games since re-signing with the Bears. Hicks recorded his first sack since Week 8 and eighth of the season, and Acho also got in on the action with a sack of Stafford in the fourth quarter.

2. Jordan Howard’s hands. The second-year running back had a 17-yard reception wiped out in the second quarter, but he looked more comfortable as a receiver after struggling much of the season in the pass game. The Bears even opted to get him involved early with a quick pass to the left side for 11 yards on the team’s first play. He finished with four catches for 26 yards.

3. Chemistry with Kendall Wright. A week after going for 107 receiving yards on 10 receptions against Cincinnati, Wright again displayed a developing chemistry with Trubisky. The shifty slot received hauled in seven catches for 81 yards.

THREE THINGS THAT DIDN’T

1. Progress from Trubisky. There were some positive feelings after Trubisky turned his best performance of his rookie season last week against the Bengals with 271 yards on 25-of-32 passing. He regressed Saturday, however, with three interceptions. He first sailed a pass to Wright on the Bears’ first drive of the second half, and later was picked off by Quandre Diggs while looking for Dontrelle Inman in the back of the end zone.

2. Limiting mistakes. Trubisky’s interceptions were costly, but the Bears didn’t do themselves any favors with penalties. The holding call which wiped out Cohen’s kick return was particularly harmful. The Bears finished with 13 penalties for 97 yards.

3. Establishing the run. The Bears ran for 222 yards on 30 carries when these two teams met in Chicago back in November. The Bears ran for just 43 yards on 15 carries Saturday. Offensive coordinator Dowell Loggains failed to establish a run game just six days after gashing the Bengals for 232 yards on 38 attempts.

WHAT’S NEXT?

The Bears return home for Week 16 after two straight weeks on the road for a matchup against the Cleveland Browns.

The Browns enter Sunday’s Week 15 matchup against the Baltimore Ravens without a win.

The Bears and Browns have met only four times since 2001 with Chicago winning three of the matchups. They last played on Dec. 15, 2013, when Jay Cutler threw for three touchdowns in a 38-31 win.

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