The Chicago Bears offense looked impressive in the first half of their Wee 1 loss to the Houston Texans. They scored on their opening drive and the final drive of the half to take a 14-10 lead into the break.
In the second half, it all started to crumble.
The poor play of Chicago's offense in the second half was due in large part to mistakes made by the offensive line. Quarterback Jay Cutler was pressured on 54.3 percent of his snaps in Week 1, the most in the NFL.
Houston sacked Cutler five times, recorded 13 quarterback hits and six quarterback hurries. The majority of those came in the second half, when the offensive line seemed to break down.
The pressure came from both the edges and up the middle against the Bears offensive line. RT Bobby Massie allowed 6 pressures, which was tied for second-most in the NFL.
It wasn’t much better for center Cody Whitehair either. In his first NFL game, Whitehair allowed 4 pressures, tied for fifth-most in the league.
Chicago’s offensive line is currently a work in progress and will have to improve as the season progresses if they want to avoid a disaster like the second half in Houston.
Other stats of note
· Linebacker Jerrell Freeman had a team-high 17 tackles in Sunday’s loss. He’s now tied for the league lead in tackles. Fellow inside linebacker Danny Trevathan had 11 tackles. Both were free agent signings in 2016 and proved in Week 1 they were worth the investment.
· Cutler finished with 216 yards passing against the Texans, with the majority of those yards coming in the first half. After throwing for 156 yards in the first half, he only threw for 60 in the final two quarters.
· In Houston, Alshon Jeffery was playing in his first game since week 14 of the 2015 season. He had four receptions for 105 yards, all in the first half. Jeffery became the first Bears player to record 100-plus receiving yards in the first half of a Week 1 game since Matt Forte in 2010. Forte had 120 yards receiving on four receptions in that game. Jeffery was targeted just one time in the second half against Houston.
· Wide receiver Kevin White led all Bears skill players by playing on 98 percent of the snaps in Week 1. White played 55 of 56 total snaps in his NFL debut.
· The Bears and Philadelphia Eagles are two of five teams who have won at least four games on Monday Night Football since 2013. The Bears are 4-1 since 2013, with wins over the Green Bay Packers, Dallas Cowboys, New York Jets and San Diego Chargers. The lone loss came to the New Orleans Saints in 2014.
· Eagles rookie quarterback Carson Wentz was sharp in his NFL debut against the Cleveland Browns. Wentz completed 59.5 percent of his passes and completed 90 percent of his passes when he was blitzed. In comparison, Texans quarterback Brock Osweiler completed just 28.6 percent of his passes when blitzed against the Bears in Week 1.
· Rookie Leonard Floyd recorded five tackles and 0.5 sacks after getting the start against the Texans. He became the first Bears rookie to record a sack in week one since Al Afalava in 2009.
· Cutler has played well on Monday Night Football in his career. Cutler is 10-5 with a passer rating of 93.4 in those 15 games. He’s also thrown for 26 touchdowns and 11 interceptions.
· Wentz became the first rookie quarterback to start for the Philadelphia Eagles in Week 1 since 1939. He finished 9-for-11 on passes of 10-plus yards including two touchdowns and a perfect passer rating of 158.3. The Bears allowed Osweiler to go 8-for-11 on passes of 10-plus yards in the opener.