With the Bears once again resting their starters and other key contributors in Thursday night’s preseason finale against the Titans, several young players made a final push for spots on the 53-man roster or at least the practice squad.
Quarterback Tyler Bray, tight end Jesper Horsted, receiver Thomas Ives and linebacker James Vaughters were among those who stood out in the Bears’ 19-15 loss at Soldier Field.
Playing the entire game, Bray completed 28 of 40 passes for 334 yards with one touchdown and a 103.5 passer rating. In the first half, he connected on 18 of 24 passes for 212 yards with one TD and a 115.3 rating.
Horsted caught five passes for 82 yards, including an 8-yard touchdown strike from Bray midway through the first quarter. An undrafted rookie from Princeton, Horsted later made a sensational 24-yard juggling reception, leaping to get his hands on a high pass before securing it as he landed on his back.
Ives caught five passes for 99 yards, while Vaughters’ third-down sack of quarterback Logan Woodside forced a Titans punt.
Bears kicker Eddy Pineiro rebounded after hooking an extra-point attempt well wide to the left in the first quarter by making all three field goals he tried, from 32, 39 and 35 yards.
Horsted’s TD reception and Pinero’s first two field goals gave the Bears a 12-0 lead midway through the second period.
The Titans got on the board on Woodside’s 9-yard touchdown pass to running back Dalyn Dawkins with 5:35 left in the first half. But veteran kicker Ryan Succop pushed the extra-point attempt wide right.
After the Bears increased their lead to 15-9 on Pineiro’s 34-yard field goal with 3:05 left in the third quarter, the Titans drew to within 15-12 on Succop’s 23-yard field goal with 10:26 remaining in the fourth period.
Woodside later threw a 4-yard touchdown pass to Dawkins with 1:25 remaining in regulation to give the Titans the win.
The Bears finished the preseason with a 1-3 record, recording a victory over the Colts last Saturday night after losing to the Panthers and Giants.
The Bears held 32 players—including all 22 starters—out of Thursday night’s game. Those who didn’t play on offense included quarterback Mitchell Trubisky; running backs Tarik Cohen, David Montgomery and Mike Davis; receivers Allen Robinson II, Taylor Gabriel, Anthony Miller, Cordarrelle Patterson and Javon Wims; tight ends Trey Burton, Adam Shaheen and Ben Braunecker; and the entire starting line, which is comprised of left tackle Charles Leno Jr., left guard Cody Whitehair, center James Daniels, right guard Kyle Long and right tackle Bobby Massie. Reserve linemen Ted Larsen and Rashaad Coward, who is recovering from an elbow injury, also did not play.
All 11 defensive starters were held out of the game as well: Tackle Akiem Hicks, nose tackle Eddie Goldman and end Bilal Nichols; outside linebackers Khalil Mack and Leonard Floyd; inside linebackers Danny Trevathan and Roquan Smith; cornerbacks Kyle Fuller and Prince Amukamara; and safeties Eddie Jackson and Ha Ha Clinton-Dix. Nickel back Buster Skrine and reserve defensive tackle Roy Robertson-Harris also did not play.
See the game unfold through the lenses of our sideline photographers as the Bears faced off against the Tennessee Titans Thursday night in the final game of the preseason.