The Bears lack inspiration in blowout loss to Washington

The Bears lack inspiration in blowout loss to Washington
at Soldier Field on December 24, 2016 in Chicago, Illinois.

Any progress that the Bears made with Matt Barkley these past four weeks vanished on Saturday against Washington.

In a 41-21 loss, Barkley accounted the most interceptions, five, since Jay Cutler accomplished that feat in his debut season with the Bears in 2009.

Barkley managed to complete 23-of-40 passes for two touchdowns, but his decisions on deep throws paid the price time and time again.

Redskins cornerback Bashaud Breeland, who had two interceptions in this game had this to say to the media afterward (via Rich Campbell): “Every time he threw a pass past 15 yards, it was like, ‘Oh, who’s got this one?’

Barkley himself admitted this (via Adam Jahns): “I think I was standing in my way today.”

The 2013 fourth rounder has eight touchdowns in five straight starts but has turned the ball over 11 times (10 interceptions and a fumble lost) in that span.

Not everything falls on Barkley, but the receivers held their own especially Cameron Meredith who caught a career-best 135 yards and a touchdown on nine grabs.

Alshon Jeffery showed up with five catches for 92 yards, Deonte Thompson added three catches for 34 yards and a score.

The best thing all day long on both sides of the ball was Jordan Howard. He fought for 119 yards on 18 carries and a catch for nine yards. The fifth round rookie now sits only 61 rushing yards away from breaking Matt Forte’s rookie team mark set back in 2008. Howard even saved a touchdown on a Barkley pick late in the second half.

For Vic Fangio’s defense, the unit failed to generate any pressure. No sacks came on the afternoon as Leonard Floyd departed with a suspected concussion (concussion protocol). Tracy Porter and Pernell McPhee both left the game briefly but returned.

Three quarterback hits were generated, one apiece from Akiem Hicks, C.J. Wilson and Deiondre’ Hall.

Porter was burned by Pierre Garcon all day long. Harold Jones-Quartey was late in coverage on the back end. Hall struggled with penalties and the Bears allowed Washington to total 478 yards and average 9.3 yards per pass.

The secondary is not good enough to hold its own without pressure. Floyd’s departure mixed with the lack of push from McPhee, Young, Hicks and Sam Acho left the Bears vulnerable.

Jacksonville beat the Titans on Saturday so that puts the Bears in the third spot in the NFL Draft hunt behind only Cleveland and San Francisco.

The Bears travel to Minnesota next Sunday for the season finale and as much as a win would be nice, it wouldn’t do much. Plus after what we witnessed in this game, I’m not sure the Bears have much more inspiration left with this group.

Thoughts on the Bears’ 41-21 loss to Washington?

Make sure to follow Jake on Twitter, @Bearsbacker and on Facebook for up to the minute news about the Chicago Bears.

Filed under: Final Thoughts

Tags: Bears, Matt Barkley

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