Grading the Bears

                                                                                                                                                                                                   
  • Bears wide receiver Darnell Mooney makes a catch against New York Giants cornerback Adoree' Jackson on Sunday, Oct. 2, 2022, in East Rutherford, N.J. Mooney had a decent afternoon with 4 receptions for 94 yards, but the wide receivers in general earned a D grade.

    Bears wide receiver Darnell Mooney makes a catch against New York Giants cornerback Adoree' Jackson on Sunday, Oct. 2, 2022, in East Rutherford, N.J. Mooney had a decent afternoon with 4 receptions for 94 yards, but the wide receivers in general earned a D grade. Associated Press

 
Updated 10/2/2022 3:46 PM

Quarterback: C-Justin Fields got off to a rocking start as he hit Darnell Mooney for 18 and 56 yards on the first two drives. Fields completed just 8 more passes for 89 yards the rest of the way, however. Fields did impress with his legs, running for 52 yards on 7 carries.

Running backs: C+Khalil Herbert (19 carries for 77 yards) and Trestan Ebner (6-20) averaged 3.88 yards per attempt. Not terrible, not great.

 

Wide receivers: DYes, Darnell Mooney had a decent afternoon with 4 receptions for 94 yards. But Dante Pettis dropped a catchable ball on third-and-4 late in the third quarter, and Cole Kmet was whistled for holding on a first-down play midway through the third quarter. Kmet (5 catches, 56 yards in four games) needs to be a much bigger part of the passing game.

Offensive line: D+The Giants had just 3 sacks in their first three games, but they dumped Justin Fields five times in the first half. The O-line did a decent job run blocking, but failed to open any running room for Khalil Herbert on a key third-and-2 late in the game.

Defensive line: DThere was little resistance to the Giants' run game and next to no pressure when New York did decide to pass.

Linebackers: DBootleg action killed the Bears all day. The LBs were almost never in position to contain QB Daniel Jones. The worst play, though, came midway through the second quarter when Nicholas Morrow failed to tackle Saquon Barkley on third-and-9 from the Bears' 27. Morrow went too high, and Barkley ended up scampering for 15 yards. Two plays later, Daniel Jones made it 14-6 on an 8-yard TD run.

Secondary: BSafety Eddie Jackson had a solid game, picking off his third pass in four games. He also made several impressive tackles. Jaquan Brisker had the Bears' only sack. Kyler Gordon was whistled for a 40-yard pass interference penalty in the second half.

Special teams: BThe was going to be an A+ before Velus Jones Jr. muffed and lost a fourth-quarter punt that killed the Bears' comeback chances. Everyone else was fantastic, with place-kicker Michael Badgley going 4-for-4 on field goals, Trenton Gill averaging 52.8 yards on 5 punts (3 of which ended up inside the 20), and Josh Blackwell forcing and recovering a fumble on a punt.

Coaching: C-My biggest gripe is not putting Dante Pettis back to receive the final punt. When the game's on the line, you put a veteran in that spot -- especially one who holds the NCAA record for most punt return TDs. He's not muffing that ball. As for the rest of the game, there were definitely issues, but the Bears had a chance at the end and that's what you want out of this team.

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