3-and-out: Bears vs. Redskins
1. “We just didn’t have enough. They had the ball one more series than we did.” – Bears coach Marc Trestman
2. “... I think they had 40 yards in the first half, and over 300 in the second half. I have to give [Josh McCown] credit. He made some good plays when guys were covered.” – Redskins coach Mike Shanahan
3. “How many points did they put up? 45? That’s on us, the ‘D’.” Bears DT Stephen Paea
3 things that worked
1. Switching to McCown — The offense had a more than seamless transition to the backup, as Josh McCown performed markedly better than Jay Cutler had. McCown completed 14 of 20 passes for 204 yards and a touchdown and led four scoring drives.
2. Special teams — Zack Bowman downed a punt at the 1-yard line in the first half. Devin Hester had an 81-yard punt return for a touchdown, and his ability on kickoff returns had the Bears’ average start position at the 35-yard line compared to the Redskins at their 19-yard line.
3. Backfield run stops — It didn’t seem like it because of the final score and yardage counts, but the Bears’ defense did make some key plays behind the line of scrimmage to keep them in the game. The defense finished with eight tackles for a loss by seven different players.
3 that didn’t
1. Defending RGIII on the rollout — On plays when Robert Griffin III would use play action and roll out, he often found a receiver with plenty of open space. The Redskins abused the Bears’ defense with this play, especially on a few third downs. Washington was 7 for 13 on third down.
2. First-half offense — The Redskins outgained the Bears 249 to 46 in the first half and held the ball for 14:29 longer than the Bears, an absurd disparity. Chicago was 0 for 4 on third down and Matt Forte had only nine yards on four carries.
3. Covering Jordan Reed — The Bears' defense was no match for the Redskins’ rookie tight end. He finished the game with nine catches for 134 yards and a touchdown.
3 moments that mattered
1. After a Redskins three-and-out in the third quarter, Matt Forte ran 50 yards for a touchdown, using a ridiculous jump-cut to juke a Redskins defender in the open field. The score tied the game and was the Bears’ first offensive points since Cutler left the game, making a statement to start a wild second half.
2. Trailing by four with 8:39 left, Gould and the Bears tried to catch the Redskins off guard with a surprise onside kick. Bowman recovered, but Eric Weems was flagged for being offside, a questionable call based on the video replays. The Redskins did go three-and-out, but that would have been a huge play for the Bears.
3. Facing a third-and-4 with 58 seconds left at the Bears’ 13-yard line, Griffin hit Reed over the middle for a 10-yard gain and a first down. Conte was in coverage on Reed and the Bears’ defense couldn’t get the third-down stop, which would have forced the Redskins to settle for a game-tying field goal. Washington scored the game-winner on the next play.
What it means: A Lions loss allows the Bears to settle for a second-place tie, a half game back of the Packers in the NFC North, but a loss to a 1-4 team with injuries to three of the team’s best players put the rest of the season in jeopardy.
What’s next: This week couldn’t be a better time for the Bears to have an off week. Players are off Tuesday through Sunday before returning to work to get ready for a Monday night game in Green Bay on Nov. 4.