A look at how the Chicago Bears fared at the Pro Bowl on Sunday.
The Pro Bowl has become a unique spectacle these days. Whether you want to consider spectacle in a positive or negative light, that’s up to you. The games have been a little more competitive in recent years, but it’s as close to a 7-on-7 contest as you can imagine. Tackles are light and are closer to two hand touch that what resembles actual football.
The AFC easily outpaced the NFC 26-7, but regardless of the outcome, seven Chicago Bears played in the game. Being the Bears have been lucky to have one player in this game over the last several years, this was a nice change of pace and something that reflects very positively on the future of the team.
Offensively, Charles Leno was the only Chicago Bear to start, and unfortunately, he did surrender a sack. Cody Whitehair got into the game and played with Mitch Trubisky and seemed to play fairly well. Again, it’s not exactly a game where you judge the performances of offensive lineman being they are barely allowed to make contact.
Mitch Trubisky played the final few seconds of the second quarter and all of the third quarter. Trubisky’s final numbers were pedestrian, but no better or worse than the other NFC QBs. Trubisky finished 5 for 9 for only 24 yards and surrendered one interception. The NFC QBs as a collective group finished 14 for 28 for 101 yards and 2 INTs. It rained steadily throughout the game and that certainly didn’t help their numbers.
One unfortunate play was a flea flicker gone wrong. Trubisky handed the ball off and as the ball was pitched back to him, Jamal Adams from the AFC came in untouched and hit Trubisky pretty firmly. It was a perfectly legal hit, but not something you see at the Pro Bowl. The last thing anyone wants to see is a quarterback getting hurt on a trick play at the Pro Bowl.
Tarik Cohen also saw the field for the NFC. Cohen had one carry for two yards and was targeted once in the passing game but the pass fell incomplete. Cohen was the NFC’s special teams returner, but the NFC didn’t have one punt or kick return for the entire game. Cohen’s game was quiet to say the least.
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Defensively, Akiem Hicks, Eddie Jackson and Kyle Fuller saw the field from the Chicago Bears. Khalil Mack was also named to the Pro Bowl but skipped the game due to injury.
Jackson did see the field but had a very quiet game and didn’t record anything statistically in limited snaps.
Akiem Hicks tallied two tackles and played regularly in the trenches for the NFC squad.
The Bears’ best performance of the game came from Kyle Fuller. Fuller tallied one tackle and had a pass defended, but most importantly, recorded an interception of Andrew Luck. Interestingly enough, it was Hicks that applied the pressure to Luck that may have forced the off target pass that Fuller nabbed.
The Bears may have not have had the splashiest days at the Pro Bowl, but that shouldn’t be too surprising being the AFC handled the NFC squad quite easily. The Pro Bowl is never really about wins and losses and it really isn’t even about performances. It’s about a celebration of the top performers of the season and while, some of the Chicago Bears were there due to injury replacements, it’s a wonderful thing that seven Bears represented the franchise in the NFL’s all-star game.
The Bears had a wonderful season that may have come to a close a few weeks to early, but the Pro Bowl gave the Bears’ top performers one final nod to the great season they had, and gives a glimpse into what fans can expect from Chicago in 2019.