CHICAGO – It was a fitting match-up on a flawless night at Soldier Field to start the 2019 season.
A hint of fall was in the air with a beautiful sunset setting the perfect backdrop for the beginning of the Bears’ centennial campaign. With a national audience watching, and a full house anticipating the match-up with the rival Packers.
If only the game could have been as great, or even a bit as good as the atmosphere. Frankly, it was a struggle in a number of areas for both sides, especially for the Mitchell Trubisky-led Bears’ offense.
By the end of frustrating and perhaps infuriating 60 minutes, Matt Nagy’s team was handed a disappointing 10-3 season-opening loss to Green Bay on Thursday night at Soldier Field.
It marks the sixth consecutive year the Bears have lost their season opener, with three of those coming against the Packers, and it was mostly because of their lack of production on offense.
Despite the fact that the defense allowed just 213 yards on the night and sacked Aaron Rodgers five times, the offense could only muster 254 in the defeat. They had just one scoring drive on the evening in the first quarter, and that produced just a field goal, as the Bears reached the red zone only once during the game.
That ended when Trubisky was intercepted by former Bears’ safety Adrian Amos, adding another painful memory to an overall forgettable night at Soldier Field.
The Bears’ defense set the tone early on with two sacks on the opening two drives as they allowed the Packers -12 total yards in the first quarter. Eddy Pineiro opened up the scoring for the Bears with a 38-yard field goal that split the uprights, drawing a boisterous roar from the crowd.
Then the offense went silent, with Trubisky and the group struggling to find a rhythm. A number of passes from the quarterback were nearly intercepted, as the group finished with just 98 first half yards.
Meanwhile, Rodgers broke through to get the Packers on the board with a quick four-play, 74-yard drive that finished with a jump ball touchdown catch by Jimmy Graham to make it 7-3.
It’s all the Bears’ defense would allow till the fourth quarter, when Rodgers led a 73-yard drive to set up a Mason Crosby field goal. But lacking any rhythm and struggling with penalties – ten on the game including a stretch of three-consecutive in the third quarter – the lead held up.
It appeared that the Bears were about to break through on a drive late in the fourth quarter as a series of Trubisky passes got them down to the Green Bay nine-yard line. But on third down the drive was ended when Amos picked off a Trubisky pass to the corner of the endzone to end the drive.
Once again, the defense got the ball back, but the offense did nothing with it. They got just one short completion before two more incompletions and a sack ended a most frustrating night for the Bears’ offense.