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Chalk Talk

Why did Bears play Hood, sit Sutton?

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Wondering about a player, a past game or another issue involving the Bears? Senior writer Larry Mayer answers a variety of email questions from fans on ChicagoBears.com.

Why did the Bears play Ziggy Hood and sit Will Sutton on the defensive line in Green Bay?

Arthur B.
Knoxville, Tennessee

The decision was a combination of the Bears wanting to give Ziggy Hood his first opportunity to show what he could do in a game and the fact that Will Sutton hasn't played as well as he did earlier in the season since he hurt his elbow in a Week 3 loss in Seattle. After signing with the Bears Oct. 22, Hood spent about four weeks getting back into football shape given that he had been sidelined since getting hurt during the preseason with the Jaguars. Hood played 23 of 78 snaps (29 percent) against the Packers, recording one tackle and drawing a key holding penalty that nullified Aaron Rodgers' 11-yard scramble to the Bears' 10-yard line. Trailing 14-13 at the time, Green Bay had to eventually punt on the drive after losing 14 yards on an errant snap on third-and-15 from the 31. Here's what defensive coordinator Vic Fangio said Wednesday about playing Hood and sitting Sutton: "We just wanted to get Ziggy in there. We hadn't seen him in games yet since we had gotten him here. Will, since he hurt his elbow, it has affected him some. But we're expecting Will to come back strong and start playing good again." Asked to assess how Hood performed against the Packers, Fangio said: "He did all right. He didn't get a ton of snaps, but the snaps he had he did fine."

There weren't any good camera angles for the replays of Eddie Lacy's touchdown run on Thanksgiving. Was it really a touchdown or should it have been called a fumble?

Ryan L.
Appleton, Wisconsin

It certainly was a close call, but there didn't seem to me like there was any refutable evidence to overturn what was originally ruled a touchdown. For those of you who didn't see the play, Packers running back Eddie Lacy flipped the ball behind him either right as he crossed the goal line or an instant before. I don't think they showed on television what happened to the ball after Lacy flipped it away on the TV broadcast, but Packers tight end Richard Rodgers alertly recovered the loose ball in the end zone. So even if it had been ruled a fumble, Green Bay most likely still would have been awarded a touchdown.

Why weren't the Bears credited with a sack on the bad snap to Aaron Rodgers on that third down play in the third quarter?

Russ
Tooele, Utah

Although the Packers faced third-and-15 and likely were going to pass, an errant shotgun snap like that is considered an aborted play and not a sack. Even though the Bears weren't credited with a sack on the stat sheet, it was still one of the most important plays in the game. Green Bay had a shot at a go-ahead field goal from the 31 before losing 14 yards on the bad snap.

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