The Bears and Steelers played a game to remember last night, and it was a thriller for so many reasons. The score changed multiple times in the fourth quarter, while there were some pretty head-scratching calls also made by the officials. Pittsburgh won at the end of the day, making things hectic in the AFC North.
Various bookies such as Betway sportsbook have listed bets for the game and the original spread was Pittsburgh -6.5, so the Bears did well to cover, at least.
Officials Hurt Chicago’s Chances
How often do the refs actually determine the final outcome of a game? Calls can be inconsistent, sure. Nobody is perfect, the officials included. But they had so many calls on Monday night that went against Chicago, which really should not have when a penalty was called on a Bears player after the ref stuck their hip out; that as crazy.
Multiple times, Justin Fields took massive hits to his body in dangerous areas. Most of them happened after the play had concluded, and yet none of the whistles were actually blown. It’s all about player safety in the NFL in 2021, and that was very much not a priority for the prized young signal-caller for the Bears.
Now, the Bears still had the ball in the waning moments with a chance to win. Cairo Santos’ 65-yarder was just barely short. But, they could have made Pittsburgh need a TD, had they gotten the initial stop on the prior drive, but the first-down was given, they got three, and so on.
Bears Showed Signs of Promise
Though they are just 3-6 on the season with this loss, it is not necessarily a lost year for the Bears. And to read more about the game they just played in, this is an excellent rundown from CBS Sports.
They came away with four sacks after having zero in the prior two games. They did this despite not having Khalil Mack available for them, making it more impressive. They were able to make it difficult for Ben Roethlisberger in big situations, coming up with several timely takedowns before he was able to release the ball.
And let’s not forget Pitt’s forced fumble on a punt return, which was scooped up and run back for a quick score.
And on the other side, they had Justin Fields slinging the ball all over the place. He averaged nearly 16 yards per attempt in this game, and he was really trying to get it deep. He finished 17-29, going for 291 yards and a TD, with one pick. He added 45 yards on eight rushes, though none of them went for more than eight total yards.
Amazingly, five receivers had a catch for 20+ yards.
Though they led by 14 in the fourth quarter, the Steelers still fell behind by the period’s end. They needed a scoring drive to stay in the game, and that is what they got. The biggest play was Ben Roethlisberger hitting Diontae Johnson for a 22-yard gain on a quick slant. Najee Harris had a 15-yard run, and they put themselves in a position to bring out Chris Boswell.
Ben completed 21 of 30 passes for 205 yards and two scores but was far from impressive. This may have been another one where they won despite him. Yes, he got them into position on the last drive. But he is on his last reserves.
They kept things crazy in the AFC North, where all four teams now have at least five wins, with Baltimore leading the way within the division with six.