Philadelphia 29, Chicago 14
When: 8:30 PM ET, Monday, September 19, 2016
Where: Soldier Field, Chicago, Illinois
CHICAGO -- The Philadelphia Eagles scored touchdowns on three consecutive second-half possessions, two of them following Chicago turnovers, and beat the Bears, 29-14 Monday night.
Bears quarterback Jay Cutler was forced from the game with an injured thumb on his passing hand. The severity of Cutler's injury was not known immediately after the game. He said further examination was scheduled for Tuesday.
Philadelphia, which led, 9-7, at halftime, scored three touchdowns in five and a half minutes at the end of the third quarter and the beginning of the fourth. Ryan Mathews scored twice on short runs, sandwiched around a 2-yard touchdown pass from Carson Wentz to Trey Burton. One of the touchdowns followed an interception and 28-yard return by Nigel Bradham and another followed a fumble recovery by Ron Brooks.
Wentz, the second player chosen in the 2016 draft, completed 21 of 34 passes for 190 yards in winning for the second time in two NFL starts. And, unlike Chicago, the rookie directed a Philadelphia offense that, for the second game in a row, did not lose a turnover.
"I thought he played well," said Doug Pederson, the Eagles' coach. "He took care of the football, he stood in there and made some nice throws. He's seeing things really well, commanding the huddle, something a nine- or 10-year vet would do."
Pederson showed his trust in Wentz by opening the game in a spread formation on offense with no running back behind Wentz. The Eagles first six plays were passes, all of them short but all of them complete.
Philadelphia, which has not lost a turnover in its two victories, actually got three second half takeaways but failed to capitalize on one of them. They left John Fox, the 0-2 Bears' coach, wondering what went wrong.
"I think we're capable of better and we've got to do better," Fox said.
Actually, the game could have been much more lopsided. The Eagles had to settle for three first-half field goals and missed several good touchdown opportunities, including a dropped pass in the end zone by Jordan Matthews.
"We knew the plays were there," Pederson said. "We just had to stop shooting ourselves in the foot."
Caleb Sturgis made the kicks from 25, 29 and 53 yards, the last one coming after a Chicago time out designed to "freeze" him just as he was about to attempt -- and miss -- the long kick. Given a second opportunity, Sturgis nailed the one that counted.
With Philadelphia leading, 9-7, the Bears began the second half with a promising drive that crossed midfield but ended when Cutler was sacked by Destiny Vaeao and fumbled, with Jordan Hicks recovering for the Eagles.
Nothing came of that opportunity but a short time later the Eagles drove 68 yards for a touchdown, with Wentz starting the drive by completing a 22-yard pass to Jordan Matthews and Mathews ending it by scoring on a 3-yard run.
That made it 16-7, and an interception by Nigel Bradham followed on the first play following the kickoff. His 28-yard return to the Bears' 2-yard line set up a 2-yard touchdown pass from Wentz to Trey Burton.
And, three plays after the following kickoff, a Jeremy Langford fumble was recovered by Brooks, a 30-yard run by Mathews set up his second touchdown, and the rout was pretty much complete at 29-7.
The Bears got a late consolation touchdown on Eddie Royal's 65-yard punt return.
Chicago's locker room looked like a hospital ward after the game, and Cutler was hardly the only victim. Nose tackle Eddie Goldman was carted off in the fourth quarter, linebacker Lamarr Houston suffered what Fox said "seems to be (a) substantial" knee injury, and two defensive backs, Adrian Amos and Bryce Callahan, left the game with concussions.
NOTES: The Bears played again without regular starting cornerback Kyle Fuller, who had minor knee surgery in August. ... The Eagles were without TE Zach Ertz (ribs) and CB Leodis McKelvin (hamstring), both injured in the season opener. ... Anthem update: No players appeared to kneel but three Eagles -- Malcolm Jenkins, Ron Brooks and Steven Means -- raised fists during playing of the national anthem.
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Chicago will play their next game on the road against Dallas. The Bears have a W/L % of .000 after a win and .000 after a loss.
Philadelphia will play their next game at home against Pittsburgh. The Eagles have a W/L % of 1.000 after a win and .000 after a loss.