Tyson Bagent passed his first NFL start with a clean stat line, running back D’Onta Foreman had three touchdowns and the Bears defense held the Raiders totally in check in a 30-12 victory at Soldier Field. Here’s what you need to know:
Three moments that mattered
1. Ball game: Bears cornerback Jaylon Johnson intercepted Raiders quarterback Brian Hoyer and returned it 39 yards for a touchdown to ice the game with 5:36 remaining. Johnson later intercepted backup Aidan O’Connell the following drive to pad his productive afternoon.
2. Thanks, Josh McDaniels: The Bears faced a first-and-goal after allowing the Raiders to covert a fourth-and-4, but the defense held strong and forced a somewhat puzzling field goal to keep the Bears in control 21-6 with 12:20 to go.
3. Bears gonna Bears: With all three timeouts following DJ Moore’s 15-yard catch on the Bears’ last drive of the first half, a promising sequence screeched to a halt near midfield. First, Matt Eberflus failed to a call a single timeout until Bagent was eventually sacked with nine seconds remaining. Then, Nathan Peterman was inserted for a Hail Mary. Why? The entire sequence made no sense.
Three things that worked
1. Foreman hat trick: The numbers weren’t eye-popping, but Foreman proved to be effective. Foreman had 41 yards on eight carries with two touchdowns in the first half, and finished with 89 yards along with a touchdown catch in the third quarter that made it 21-3 Bears.
2. Bagent: The undrafted rookie finishing the first half 14 for 19 for 104 yards was a pleasant development. Bagent was able to incorporate Moore and Darnell Mooney into the mix for a combined 10 catches for 69 yards at the halfway point. It continued the rest of the game for a clean 21 for 29 with 162 yards and no interceptions.
3. Defense holds up: The Bears defense deserves plenty of credit. They held the Raiders to 1-of-8 on third down, limited Davante Adams to a nonconsequential seven catches for 57 yards, Johnson had two interceptions and Tremaine Edmunds also had an interception, his first as a Bear. Add in 12 allowed points, that’s a real clean day.
Three things that didn’t
1. Need more: The Bears defensive front didn’t have a sack until 1:26 left in the third quarter against the 38-year-old Hoyer. While it generated some pressure throughout the game, the Bears still need to show they can get to the quarterback consistently enough.
2. Focus up: On a drive deep in the fourth quarter seeking an insurance score, the Bears offense was tagged with back-to-back penalties. Teven Jenkins was flagged for holding that wiped out a 12-yard gain by Darrynton Evans. Cole Kmet was subsequently flagged for a false start. It stalled the drive, but Cairo Santos salvaged it with a 54-yard field goal with 5:46 remaining to make it 24-6 Bears.
3. Focus up, part II: On that note, the Bears were tagged with nine penalties for 110 yards. Larry Borom had a few holding calls that stalled some progress during the game, too. The Bears ultimately made up for it, but those are areas that they need to avoid in order to consistently win football games.
The Bears visit the Los Angeles Chargers on Sunday Night Football next weekend. Kickoff is 7:20 p.m.