The Bears are having a miserable season.
But Chicago has one big reason to smile. His name is Justin Fields. The second-year quarterback continued his breakout campaign on Sunday with one of the more remarkable runs you’ll ever see on a football field. Unfortunately, that didn’t get them the win in a 25-20 loss to the Philadelphia Eagles.
Facing Chicago on second-and-27 in the second quarter, the Bears were poised for more lost yards when quarterback Hasson Reddick tackled Fields in the backfield. Fields had other ideas. He slipped out of Redick’s hands and then raced toward the left sideline with an open field in front of him. He then sprinted past fullback TJ Edwards and raced past the marker for a first down. He wasn’t done.
Fields eluded two more Eagles defenders, then deflected a tackle attempt by cornerback James Bradbury and rolled into the end zone for a 48-yard touchdown.
Unfortunately for Fields, replays showed he went out of bounds at the 9-yard line. The account was denied. But David Montgomery took it on the next play for a 9-yard run.
It was an electric game, the kind that made Fields the most dangerous running back in football on a Bears team that leads the NFL in rushing. He is one of the best runners in football. He entered Sunday as the NFL’s ninth-leading rusher with 905 yards while averaging a career-best 7.1 yards per attempt.
He also registers with advanced indicators. According to the NFL’s Next Gen Stats, Fields had a less than 1% chance of playing first.
Unfortunately for the Bears, Fields’ breakout didn’t have an impact in the standings. Their loss on Sunday dropped them to 3-11, the worst record in the NFC.
They kept things close at 13-1 against the Eagles thanks to Jalen Hurts and two interceptions in the game by Fields. He showed his arm late in the rally, completing a 35-yard touchdown pass to Byron Pringle to cut Chicago’s deficit to five points.
But the Eagles ran out the clock on their ensuing possession to secure the victory. Fields finished the day completing 14-of-21 passes for 152 yards with two touchdowns. His 95 yards on the ground put him right at 1,000 rushing yards on the season. He joined Michael Vick and Lamar Jackson as the only quarterback in NFL history to reach the milestone. He didn’t turn the ball over.
It’s the kind of effort that provides something Bears fans haven’t experienced in a long time. If Chicago touches its pick, that hope could extend into contention in the NFC North.