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Why didn't Bears let 49ers score TD?


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

After not stopping the 49ers on third down inside the 15 late in the fourth quarter, why didn't the Bears let San Francisco score a touchdown? That would have at least given the Bears offense a chance to win the game with a late touchdown.

David J.

The situation you're referring to occurred with 1:40 remaining after the 49ers had picked up a first down at the Bears' 7-yard line. Coach John Fox acknowledged that he considered letting San Francisco score on the next play, but decided against it, saying: "We felt good about the block we had on the potential field goal. Neither one of those are great options at the 5- and 4-yard line. The 49ers ran three plays—capped by a kneel-down by quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo—before sending Robbie Gould out to kick a 24-yard field goal with :08 remaining.

During the second quarter of Sunday's game, Mitchell Trubisky scrambled toward the sideline. The Bears challenged the placement of the ball and had it advanced. So why were they charged with a timeout?

Johnny N.
Harshaw, Wisconsin

The Bears challenged the ruling that quarterback Mitchell Trubisky did not reach the line needed for a first down. Because the replay review confirmed that he did not—even though the ball placement may have been adjusted—the Bears lost the challenge and were docked a timeout.

With the Bears out of playoff contention and Kyle Long dealing with shoulder, ankle and finger injuries, do you think they will shut him down for the rest of the season?

Robert H.
Darien, Illinois

One day after Kyle Long exited Sunday's loss to the 49ers with a shoulder injury, Bears coach John Fox acknowledged that the three-time Pro Bowl offensive lineman could be shut down for the rest of the season. Here's what Fox had to say Monday: "That's a possibility. I don't want to say yes; I don't want to say no at this point. We're still evaluating that. We just played a game yesterday. [Monday] and [Tuesday] are usually times where players get evaluated medically and that's pretty much the time frame of most organizations in the NFL. When we know something concrete and for sure, we'll let you know."

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