CHICAGO — There may be better days in the Andy Dalton era of the Chicago Bears, but Sunday night got off to a rough start and the veteran quarterback (and team) never fully recovered.
Bears fans may already be looking toward rookie quarterback Justin Fields as the savior after a blowout loss on primetime television Sunday night.
Dalton (27-38, 206 yards, 1 interception, no TDs) has glimpses of success. Still, the Bears offense had no answer for a Rams defense that brought back stars like Aaron Donald, Jalen Ramsey and added Pro-Bowl quarterback Matthew Stafford under center on the offense.
The Rams’ defense pressured Dalton early and often. The Rams defense forced two critical turnovers in the first quarter, a redzone interception and a fumble, both on fourth down, and never relented in their determination to sack the quarterback.
The Bears went scoreless in the first quarter, a streak almost extended into halftime, but a David Montgomery rushing touchdown gave the Bears their first points. David Montgomery would finish with 108 yards and a touchdown for the Bears.
Entering the half, the Bears trailed the Rams 13-7 and looked to build on their momentum. But the Bears’ attempt to battle back fell short, as the Rams answered out the half with points. A Justin Fields touchdown run got the Bears to 14 on the scoreboard and cut the deficit by six points (20-14). But the Rams would score 14 unanswered to extend the lead to 34-14 and clinch the season-opening victory.
Matthew Stafford, the ex-Lion who was more than familiar with his old division foe, completed 20 of 26 passes for 321 yards and three touchdowns.
- Running back David Montgomery was the workhouse of the offense Sunday night, bursting up the middle and showing that offseason work with a speed trainer paid dividends. An injury scare proved mute as he later returned to the game.
- A touchdown run from Justin Fields Sunday night will do nothing to hush the roar from fans that he should be the starter now and not the starter(or-gadget-play-QB) in question.
- Head coach Matt Nagy’s aggression didn’t pay off. Three times he went for it on fourth down and none proved successful.
- The Bears D was torched by the Rams’ air attack. Stafford looked comfortable in the pocket and had his way with the Bears’ secondary much, if not all, of the night.
- An Andy Dalton revenge game could be what the struggling QB needs to stay the course as the lead man under center. The Cincinatti Bengals did pull out an overtime victory against the Minnesota Vikings, however, winning 27-24, proving that next’s week’s contest could be a back-and-forth that many may not have initially anticipated.