Quick Game Comments: Dolphins at Bears 11/6/22


  • The Bears gave an indication of what the plan was when they started the game with 5 straight passes before running the ball. The first drive was 7 passes total to only one run. Obviously, they thought they could attack the Dolphins defensive backfield despite the 15 mph wind.
  • The Dolphins were playing a lot of press coverage at the line of scrimmage. Surprisingly it didn’t really work as well as I would have anticipated. The Bears passed for 116 yards on 17 attempts. Not great. But not completely shut down and they did have their moments. The man coverage also left the defensive backs with their backs turned to the line of scrimmage. Which left Justin Fields open to run the ball. More on that below.
  • Chase Claypool immediately showed some of his value as he drew a 28 yard pass interference penalty on the first possession. Claypool also got s first down with a nifty move in space in the first quarter. Claypool had 2 catches for 13 yards which doesn’t sound like much but it was his first game with a new team and with minimal time to prepare. And notably he should have drawn another pass interference call at the end of the game to keep the Bears final drive alive. Most of the time that’s called and should be added to his credit.
  • There seemed to be a conscious effort to get Cole Kmet more involved in the game. The first pass of the game went to him. He also had a jet sweep and a quarterback sneak in the first quarter. Scored a touchdown on the same drive early in the second quarter. Kmet ran for 9 yards o two rushes in addition to having 5 catches for 41 yards and 2 touchdowns.
  • The Dolphins had a spy on Fields but that didn’t stop him from doing damage with his legs. The Dolphins had every bit as much trouble stopping Fields on those designed runs as the Patriots did. In fact, more. Fields set a new single game NFL record for a quarterback when he rushed for 178 yards, a remarkable feat, making him the Bears greatest offensive weapon by a long way. The Bears rushed for a total of 252 yards.
  • One of the things I was glad to see was the outstanding run fake on the Fields roll out and pass to come back for a touchdown early in the second quarter. It wasn’t the only one today. One of the complaints that I’ve had about bears quarterbacks for a long time is that they do not carry out those run fakes as well as they should. Fields did a good job there.
  • Another thing that made me happy was and Fields completed a pass to David Montgomery on a route out of the backfield. I feel that the Bears do not send Montgomery out enough for passes on routes past the line of scrimmage either out of the backfield or lined up as a receiver and I think that they should take better advantage of his talents in that direction.
  • Heck of a throw and heck of a catch by Darnell Mooney just after the two-minute warning near the end of the half. Nicely done.
  • Fields was only sacked twice today. That was largely due to his mobility, but the offensive line deserves some praise as well.
  • Fields final passer rating was 106.7. Another solid effort I would say and much improved over the first four games or so of the season.
  • As a measure of the Bears effectiveness on offense, the Bears were 10 of 16 on third down and 1 of 2 on fourth down.


  • The Bears seemed to be determined to keep the Dolphins from running the ball. It’s obvious that they concentrated on their run defense last week as it’s been suffering from ill-discipline. Dolphins ran 477 yards on 23 attempts for only 3.3 yards per rush.
  • The problem is that the Dolphins had no intention of leaning on the run. They passed the ball 30 times for 302 yards. They concentrated upon attacking the Bears rookie Jaquon Brisker and the outside corner opposite Jaylon Johnson. That was Kindle Vildor, then Jaylon Jones after Vildor left with an injury. Everybody’s going to be attacking whoever is opposite Johnson for the rest of the season. Far as I can tell they should have every expectation of success doing so. Kyler Gordon was left with the unenviable task of covering Tyreek Hill in the slot. That was a mist match as well.
  • Tua Tagovailoa did a great job of alternating throwing balls to his wide receivers all game. Jaylen Waddle and Tyreek Hill did an outstanding job. The Bears played mostly zone defense and the Dolphins tore it apart. Tagovailoa got the ball out fast and he saw almost no pressure. His first incompletion came with one minute left in the first half. Tagovailoa was 21 for 30 tabs for 302 yards with three touchdowns and no interceptions. Passer rating was an outstanding 135.7. These guys are tough to stop.
  • I think that Nicholas Morrow decided that he was the Bears player we needed to step up after Roquan Smith was traded. He was all over the field today and made some nice plays. Good for him. Angelo Blackson’s effort was notable as well
  • As I implied above the Bears were in a tough spot here. They struggled to get pressure with their front four and couldn’t blitz with Hill and Waddle on the field. Tagovailoa saw very little pressure in the first half and saw only a bit more in the second as the Bears evidently made some adjustments.
  • Tagovailoa doesn’t have a reputation for having a very strong arm. But the high winds didn’t affect his passes too much. He likes to go over the middle like many quarterbacks and their NFL offenses do. He doesn’t have the arm strength to throw the ball to the outside nearly as well. But if arm strength is an issue, he wasn’t affected too much today by the weather elements. That’s a good sign for him.
  • The Beas held the Dolphins to 5 of 10 on third down and held on two crucial fourth downs in the fourth quarter to keep the Bears in it.
  • Jack Sanborn was in for the traded Roquan Smith today had a solid day with 7 tackles, all solo, though none were for a loss.


  • Your announcers were Kevin Harlan (play-by-play), Trent Green (analyst), and Melanie Collins (sideline). It’s always a pleasure to hear Harlan and, considered with the proper perspective, there’s a lot to like about Green. Green isn’t Tony Romo or Cris Collinsworth. But for what he is, he does a pretty good job. I think he expressed all our fears when he talked about the possibility that Justin Fields, though young, might wear down quickly in the same way that Cam Newton did due to the punishment that his body is taking because he’s running all the time. We certainly hope that that is simply temporary, and that Fields will become a better pocket passer over time. But for right now I think we all realize that it’s a problem. Green provided many other insights over the course of the game which I found to be helpful.
  • Velus Jones was a healthy scratch. Khalil Herbert was returning kicks. I’d love to tell you who was returning punts but the Dolphins never did it.
  • Herbert completely whiffed on his block on Jalen Phillips on a blocked a Bears punt in the second quarter which was turned into a touchdown by Andrew Van Ginkle. It’s possible that blocks like that are the reason why Herbert has trouble getting on the field over Montgomery despite superior running stats.
  • Turnovers
  • Saw two pretty good quarterbacks today. Tagovailoa is rapidly being recognized as one of the best quarterbacks in the league this year. Fields has really been coming along and is taking full advantage of his legs while he learns to better handle the passing game.If you ask me which one I would choose there was a time when I would’ve said Tagovailoa. But I don’t think so anymore. Tagovailoa was only successful once Miami surrounded him with superior talent. When he didn’t have that, we saw what he was. And it wasn’t great.Fields on the other hand is doing it with a leaky offensive line and less than stellar talent at wide receiver. He’s carrying the team on his own. In the end, my bet is that he turns out to be the superior quarterback. Let’s just hope that he learns to better pass from the pocket sooner rather than later. Otherwise, his career may be cut too short by wear and tear on his body.
  • Well give the Bears credit. That was quite an effort despite the fact that they allowed Miami to score 35 points. Defensively the Bears came up with some big stops in the fourth quarter and, let’s be frank, it took a really poor call non-call by the officials on an obvious pass interference on Chase Claypool to allow Miami to seal the victory.

    Having said that, it isn’t like Miami didn’t deserve to win. They marched up and down the field with superior talent on a superior offense and they ripped the Bears defense to shreds with the passing game today for 3 quarters. So all credit to them.

    On the even brighter side, however, it looks like the Bears may actually have a quarterback. I’m allowing myself to hope so anyway. And as he grows, so the offense seems to grow with him. That is perhaps the best news of the day. Because let’s be honest. We all know that this season was never going to be about winning a lot of football games anyway.

Leave a Reply