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Bears Breakdown

Fields rebounds from adversity to lead game-winning drive


MINNEAPOLIS – Bears quarterback Justin Fields displayed resiliency and clutch playmaking ability late in Monday night's 12-10 win over the Vikings at U.S. Bank Stadium.

After losing fumbles on back-to-back fourth-quarter possessions, the third-year pro bounced back to engineer a 10-play, 66-yard drive that resulted in Cairo Santos' game-winning 30-yard field goal with :10 remaining.

Trailing 10-9, the Bears took over at their own 22 with 2:29 to play after the defense had forced a three-and-out. Fields connected with DJ Moore for 22 yards, ran for gains of 5 and 8 yards, and then rifled a 36-yard pass to Moore over the middle to the Minnesota 13.

"It means a lot for [Fields] to be able to come back from [the two fumbles] and then seal the deal with that great in-cut that he threw to DJ," said coach Matt Eberflus.

Moore described it as "a great bounce back" by Fields, adding that the quarterback "came back like a true leader does and somebody on the rise like a young quarterback to just block [the adversity] out and make that throw."

The 36-yard pass, which was the longest play from scrimmage in the game, came on a familiar play.

"That's a play we run all the time," Fields said. "In practice, we've been running that play since I can remember. Saw the deep defenders get a bunch of depth with Tyler [Scott] or [Darnell] Mooney or somebody. Really the only player that was in the middle right there was '44' [Josh] Metellus and he had no idea where DJ was.

"The O-line did a great job protecting, great call by Luke [Getsy]. Like I said, that's a play that goes back all the way to training camp. Guys executed it at a perfect level. We've hit it multiple times in practice on our defense in that two-minute situation, so just going back to those banked reps and everybody executing when we needed to."

Playing takeaway

The Bears' four interceptions were their most since they picked off four passes in a 15-6 win over the Rams Dec. 9, 2018, at Soldier Field. The defense has seven interceptions in its last two games and 13 on the season, second most in the NFL behind the 49ers' 15.

"That's the recipe for a good defense—taking the ball away, forcing negative plays, forcing bad field position," said linebacker T.J. Edwards, whose third-quarter interception was his second of the season and fourth of his NFL career.

"No matter what happened today, I just thought we did a great job of staying together as a team and finding a way to come out of here with a win. There was no quit. There was no way we weren't coming out of here with a win just with everything we've been through. We focused on finishing all week. That was the emphasis, and we were able to do it."

Finishing kick

After missing a 48-yard field-goal attempt on the game's opening possession, Santos bounced back to hit his final four field-goal tries from 25, 39, 55 and 30 yards.

"It's really, I feel, the life of a kicker," Santos said. "It's not a perfect craft. We're not perfect. We strive to be. We have to have short memories. I'm just thankful I got the opportunity throughout the game to just keep doing what I do."

This season Santos has made 23 of 25 field goals (92.0%), including 6 of 6 from 50 yards and beyond. His 55-yarder Monday night matched a career-long, and his 30-yarder was his 100th field goal as a member of the Bears.

Monday night's rare early miss obviously didn't affect Santos the rest of the night.

"You have to just really trust your work that you do, the operation, the line, which I do," he said. "And just keep doing what we do. We didn't have to change anything. The miss was on me, just not finishing the kick. I was disappointed, for sure. It was eating me alive for a little while. But I knew I had to stay with it and just do what we do, and it was awesome to get the opportunity to bounce back."

In the spotlight

Fields has now won his last three primetime starts, all on the road. He passed for 282 yards and four touchdowns in a 40-20 victory over the Commanders Oct. 5, and threw for 179 yards and one TD and rushed for 82 yards and one TD Oct. 24, 2022, in a 33-14 win over the Patriots.

On the shelf

Running back D'Onta Foreman (shin/ankle), tackle Larry Borom (illness), cornerback Tyrique Stevenson (ankle) and linebacker Noah Sewell (knee) sat out Monday night's game. Other Bears inactives were defensive end Dominique Robinson and safety Quindell Johnson.

The Vikings played without star receiver Justin Jefferson, who missed his seventh straight game with a hamstring injury he sustained in a Week 5 loss to the Chiefs.

News and notes

Moore's late 36-yard reception gave him 1,003 yards this year, his fourth 1,000-yard campaign in six NFL seasons … The Bears rushed for 118 yards on 28 carries, topping the 100-yard mark for the eighth time in nine games … Monday night marked the first time this season the Bears won a game in which they committed a turnover. They entered Week 12 with a 3-0 record in games without a turnover and 0-8 when they committed at least one … The Bears run defense yielded only 73 yards on 17 carries, the eighth time in the last nine games they've held an opponent to fewer than 100 yards … Monday night's win was the Bears' first over the Vikings since Dec. 20, 2020, snapping a five-game losing streak.

Check out the best images—taken by Bears photographers—from Monday night's victory over the Vikings in Minneapolis.

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