Chicago Bears, Nick Foles look to gain rhythm on offense

Bear Blitz

LAKE FOREST, Ill. (AP)After Chicago Bears quarterback Nick Foles struggled to get into a rhythm with his receivers in Sunday’s 19-11 loss to the Indianapolis Colts, coach Matt Nagy saw a need to fine-tune the operation.

It needs to occur quickly for the Bears (3-1) because Tampa Bay (3-1) comes to Soldier Field for a Thursday night game, and it won’t be easy to keep up with Tom Brady’s high-scoring offense.

”I talked this morning a little bit about calibrating us as an offense, Nick as a quarterback getting calibrated, myself with him getting calibrated in regards to working through this process,” Nagy said Monday. ”We’ve got to get on that and roll. It’s time.”

The Bears sputtered offensively without a touchdown until late in the fourth quarter, when Foles found Allen Robinson on 16-yard pass. The offense had 28 rushing yards while Foles completed 26 of 42 for 249 yards with an interception.

”You know, the biggest thing (Sunday) was there just was no rhythm,” Nagy said. ”And so when you’re on the sideline and you’re talking about what plays you like I think what I noticed from Nick was just a no-panic on the sideline, even as frustrating as it was for all of us. There really was no sense of panic at any time.

”It wasn’t anybody being (ticked) off or angry because of the way things were going. That’s not how it was at all.”

Robinson saw the run as the way they normally find their rhythm in the passing game.

”This game, we really didn’t get too much of the run game going,” Robinson said. ”Some of our toughest stuff off the run game, we weren’t able to get going.”

Passes were thrown behind receivers or over them, like on Foles’ only interception when he targeted Anthony Miller. Foles couldn’t estimate how long it would take to get in sync with his receivers.

”I don’t think there’s a time on it,” Foles said Sunday night. ”I think it’s just, you know what, (Monday) we’re going to have an opportunity to get better.

”I don’t think I’ve ever played in an undefeated season, and you know, every time you lose, it shows more than wins do, and you never want to lose, but that’s part of it. I look forward to working with the guys and moving forward, and it’s never easy, but it tests you as a human being.”

WHAT NEEDS HELP

The running game carried the Bears in the first three games when they rushed for 414 yards and set up play-action passing, But with David Montgomery held to 27 yards and Tarik Cohen lost for the season with a knee injury, there wasn’t much for the Colts to worry about beyond tracking Robinson.

”Let’s get the run game going,” Nagy said. ”Let’s understand what we can get with that lets us get some chunk plays out of the run game, which will help the pass game.”

STOCK UP

Linebacker Roquan Smith started slowly this season but on Sunday made 13 tackles, including three for loss. According to the Bears, this is only the fourth time since 2018 an NFL player with at least 13 tackles also made three or more for loss.

STOCK DOWN

Rookie tight end Cole Kmet. The Bears made him their first pick in the draft and through his first four games he’s made one reception on three targets for 12 yards. He went without a reception Sunday for the second straight game.

INJURED

Safety Deon Bush suffered a hamstring injury in the game. The Bears are still dealing with a hamstring injury to defensive back Sherrick McManis, and trying to counter the effect of losing Tarik Cohen for the season to a torn right anterior cruciate ligament.

KEY NUMBER

8 – The Bears committed eight penalties against the Colts for 103 yards, a week after they committed 10 for 80 yards against Atlanta. Two Indianapolis scoring drives were aided greatly by defensive penalties.

NEXT STEPS

The Bears (3-1) host Tampa Bay (3-1) in their first game against Brady since losing to the New England Patriots 38-31 in 2018 at Soldier Field. Brady has beaten the Bears in all five matchups with them, while throwing 14 touchdowns to four interceptions.

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