Matt Nagy and Sean Desai were bad for the Chicago Bears in this game.
Nagy returned to the Chicago Bears’ sideline after missing last week’s game due to being in the COVID-19 protocol. He stayed at a hotel while quarantining.
The Chicago Bears were clearly a different offensive team than what we saw against San Francisco in the first half. They did not have a first down until 2:58 left in the half. The Bears had eight first downs and 13 points in the first half against the 49ers.
I know Offensive Coordinator Bill Lazor is calling the plays but Nagy has made it clear he gets the final say. You just got this feeling he was wanting to run plays that worked for his offense and not for Fields early in the game. It took forever to run a bootleg as Bears legend Olin Kreutz kept track.
The Bears’ offense looked sluggish to get out of the gate compared to a fresh start the prior week. In one game, Nagy was not there. In the other game, he was. Coincidence? I think not. The penalties were back-breaking. Did Nagy hold anyone accountable or do the old-school coach screaming in a player’s face? Nope.
Instead, he had a nice discussion with Angelo Blackson after he got an unnecessary roughness penalty for what appeared to be taking a swing with another player wearing a helmet. The team’s discipline is lacking and a lot of that falls on Nagy. I am sure he is looking into “the why” of this problem instead of the “the how it gets fixed” portion.
It is pretty simple why this is happening, Nagy is not holding these guys accountable. At least not publicly. He has discussions with them when he probably should be taking away helmets. I guess it is all about the culture, one that is not winning right now. Nagy is a far cry from his first-year 12-4, 2018 NFL Coach of the Year campaign. Since then, the Bears are 19-22.
Finally, Nagy’s choice to attempt a 65-yard field goal to win the game was a head-scratcher. He chose to ask a kicker known for accuracy and not a big boot to make a field goal few kickers can make. If Justin Tucker was on the roster, I’d get the move.
Nagy asked Santos to attempt a 65-yard field goal on grass, at Heinz Field (which is outdoors) with not the most favorable kicking conditions. You only ask kickers like Santos to try that if you are playing in Denver or a dome.
Santos gave it a valiant try but was not even close. Nagy chooses to not go for the Hail Mary. He ignored Fields’ big arm, Graham, and Robinson’s height and choose to put Santos in a 99.9% chance of failure.
His defensive coordinator did not fare any better. Desai’s run defense was stout but the tackling again was poor. Cornerback Kindle Vildor was left on an island far too many times which led to big Pittsburgh plays. He could not come up with the right play calls to stop the Steelers when it mattered most. The defense also went another game without an interception.
Nagy or Desai probably should have had someone on the field remind Quinn where to properly line up. The defense continues to slide more and more away from the elite level they showed in Las Vegas. During this four-game losing streak, the Bears defense has given up a 31-point average. That is an 11-point spike from its 20 points per game yield through the Chicago Bears’ first five games.