Thursday night football turned into a Thursday night beatdown this week as the Chicago Bears won their second preseason game of the exhibition season 27-11 against the Seattle Seahawks. Bears sophomore quarterback Justin Fields only played one drive, but that’s all Chicago really needed. A 14-0 run in the second quarter extended the Bears’ lead to 17 by halftime, and the deficit was too big for Seattle’s reserves to overcome.
Seahawks quarterback Drew Lock was set to start this matchup against Geno Smith as the two continue their battle for positions, but the former Denver Bronco contracted COVID-19 this week, so Smith started again in his place.
Smith played the entire first half, completing 10 of 18 passes for 112 yards and registering an up-and-down performance. Head coach Pete Carroll said before the game that Smith would play into the third quarter, but the quarterback came out of the locker room after halftime with his right knee wrapped and Jacob Eason took over instead.
Chicago won in all three facets of the game. The offense was more consistent, the defense flexed but never broke, and the special teams created multiple splashplays. Let’s take a look at what happened in Seattle on Thursday night.
Geno Smith isn’t running away with QB competition
After Lock was sidelined due to COVID-19, Smith started again as quarterback. Many expected this to be the moment when the vet would run away with the quarterback competition, but that didn’t happen.
We saw both good and bad from the Seahawks offense, and it wasn’t all Smith’s fault. On a first-half drive, the Seahawks converted a fourth and two at the Bears 34 to reach the 22, but an illegal hand penalty nullified the game and threw Seattle off target . On the very next drive, Jason Myers missed a 47-yard field goal attempt after the Seahawks had a first-and-10 from the Bears 27-yard line just a few games earlier.
Smith missed a couple of deep passes and also stumbled on his own running back from game action for a big loss. He had a couple of nice throws that built up big yards, but that doesn’t change the fact that the Seahawks were outplayed 17-0 in the first half and that the boo birds were out in Seattle.
Our best guess is Smith will win the job, but that’s exactly what he didn’t do Thursday night. A fan prepared for a lackluster offensive performance.
Justin Fields decent in limited action
Fields played just one drive Thursday night and completed 5 of 7 passes for 39 yards. Once again, offensive Line Fields didn’t exactly help out early. He was under pressure on almost every passing play, but the Bears marched 52 yards downfield on 10 plays to score a field goal — the first points of the game.
However, when Fields gets time to throw, he looks good. Check out this 19-yard connection with Cole Kmet’s tight end.
A few things to note from that first drive: The Bears got into action with almost every game that came by. Additionally, the offensive faced a fourth and two after five possession games. Fields then did a good job of sidestepping Darrell Taylor to keep the drive alive.
DK Metcalf and Tyler Lockett make surprise appearances
ESPN didn’t expect Seattle’s top two wide receivers to play, but to the surprise of the broadcast crew and virtually everyone, Metcalf and Lockett trotted onto the field to celebrate Seattle’s first possession of the game. However, neither was targeted, and the Seahawks went three-and-out.
Bear rookie WR/PR Velus Jones Jr. flashes
Many don’t see Chicago as one of the elite wide-receiving corps in the NFL, but keep an eye on the Tennessee freshman. Even if Jones Jr. has no influence on catching the ball in Year 1, he can appear as a returner.
Check out this 48-yard punt return Jones Jr. took off the touchline in the first quarter:
Bears special teams touchdown
While the Bears looked good bringing back punts, the Seahawks didn’t. Seattle screwed up a punt last week and had another Thursday night that actually cost them seven points!
Seahawks LG Damien Lewis retired injured
This is not what you want to see in pre-season. Lewis, who started the Seahawks’ left guard, went down alongside Caleb Johnson early in the second quarter, and the show noted teammates were quick to call in medical personnel as soon as the whistle blew. According to the Tacoma News Tribunemedical personnel placed an air cast on Lewis’ leg/ankle and he was carted off the field.
Lewis started in all 13 games he played for the Seahawks last year.
First-round pick LT Charles Cross struggles on penalties
The Seahawks committed five offensive penalties in the first half. Cross had four of them with three false starts and a holding penalty. He took his fifth penalty – another false start – in the third quarter. Playing left tackle, especially as a beginner, is tough. Cross has all the intangibles to be a franchise left tackle, but he won’t if he pulls yellow wash often.
The Bears end the preseason away against the Cleveland Browns next Saturday. The Seahawks will also head out to face the Dallas Cowboys and wrap up the exhibition season next Friday.