Justin Fields may not have lit up the stat sheet in this one, but he played well versus the Detroit Lions. The Chicago Bears walk away with a 24-14 victory over the Lions. Fields’ quarterback rating will not look good in this one after only throwing for 202 yards and no touchdowns. A deflected interception makes his numbers look even worse. However, this is not the storyline of this game. The Bears suffer a loss despite the victory as David Montgomery goes down with a knee injury.
David Montgomery’s knee injury is not just a bone bruise as Andy Dalton suffered either. We don’t know for sure yet, but the broadcast would not even show a replay because it was so gruesome. Montgomery was able to walk off the field rather than be carted off, but that does not mean he is safe from a severe injury. Let’s be hopeful that he is able to return in only a few weeks and not miss the entire season.
Early signs could be good for the Chicago Bears and David Montgomery
Without any test results, we do not know for sure what the diagnosis will be. However, it appears we can offer some insight here from David J. Chao — a former NFL team and sports doctor — who watched what we could see of the play and who is worried David Montgomery may have suffered a left knee MCL sprain.
If this ends up being the case, the Chicago Bears escaped what could have been a catastrophic blow to the offense. The initial fear was obviously a torn ACL that would have kept David Montgomery out for the rest of the 2021 season.
Montgomery is a crucial part of this Chicago Bears offense. He was top-five in the NFL in rushing yards last season and was already off to a great start this year. Heading into this game, Montgomery had totaled 203 rushing yards (4.4 yards-per-carry average) and a touchdown. He also caught six of nine targets for another 49 yards.
Before going down with his knee injury, David Montgomery had gained 106 yards on 23 carries and two touchdowns. He accounted for more than half of the Chicago Bears points versus the Lions. Losing him is going to hurt, but luckily the Bears have some solid running back depth now. Damien Williams stepped in late and performed well. On the day, he gained 55 yards on only eight carries. He too added a touchdown.
If the injury is an MCL sprain for David Montgomery, I’d expect him to go on short-term injured reserve. This means he would be out a minimum of three weeks. From what I am reading about MCL sprains, the injury typically causes a player to be considered week-to-week and miss a minimum of two weeks. However, if the sprain is severe or a partial tear, it could be at least four weeks.
If I were a betting man, I would assume that if the diagnoisis is correct and there isn’t something more severe, the soonest we will see Montgomery return is the Baltimore Ravens game. This would be a conservative approach, but the Bears have five weeks before their bye week in Week 10. This would give Montgomery two extra weeks to rehab and return from the knee injury. Losing him for that long is a big loss.