Tough Loss

The Bears played their best half of football as they took a 13-7 lead into the lockerroom against the Philadelphia Eagles, but it all went wrong in the game's final 30 minutes.

There were several questionable calls that went against the Bears, but in the offense couldn't move the ball in the second half and the result was the team's sixth straight loss dropping a 19-13 decision to the Eagles.

The offense gained nine yards on their first five possessions of the second half. A last minute drive fell short as Jim Miller was sacked on a third down play setting up a fourth and 18 from the Eagles 34. On the following play a desperation pass to Marcus Robinson fell helplessly out of bounds.

The defense gave the team a chance to win, but four field goals by David Akers was enough to win the game.

Following a scoreless first quarter the Bears offense went to work against the NFL's second ranked defense. Anthony Thomas had 42 (22 rush 20 receiving) total yards in leading to a Paul Edinger 30-yard field goal, which put the Bears up 3-0.

The Eagles answered on the ensuing drive. Three defensive penalties for 30 aided Philadelphia on their drive. The visitors went ahead on a five-yard scramble by Donovan McNabb. His sixth rushing score of the year made the score 7-3 with less than five minutes to go in the half.

However, the Bears answered back with a seven-play drive. Thomas continued his first half production adding 26 more rushing yards on five carries including a six-yard touchdown run reclaiming the lead for Chicago.

The Eagles went into a two-minute offense and drove inside Bears territory on a 23-yard catch by Antonio Freeman. Coming out of a timeout McNabb was pressured by Brian Urlacher and the QB threw the ball up hoping to connect with an Eagles receiver, but the floating ball was scooped up by Mike Brown. A personal foul on Bryan Robinson, which was the third called against the Bears in the half, pushed the starting point back to the 23-yard line.

Miller took over with a full compliment of timeouts and turned a third straight drive into points. A 25-yard catch by Ahmad Merritt brought Edinger on for his second field goal of the game. A 53-yard attempt hit the crossbar and bounced over to the end the half at 13-7.

A short kickoff by Edinger gave Philadelphia the ball at their forty. McNabb hooked up with Freeman for a 28-yard reception. A 13-yard scramble by McNabb gave the Eagles first and goal, but the defense stopped the Eagles from putting a touchdown on the board. David Akers hit his first of four field goals.

A three and out by the Bears was followed by a poor punt by Brad Maynard, who had a problem getting any hangtime on his punts, was coupled by a 14-yard return by Brian Mitchell.

Starting the drive at the Bears 37 the Eagles got enough yardage to add Akers field goal that tied the game.

Early in the fourth quarter Dez White lined up in the backfield and Miller pitched the ball to the receiver. Looking up field White never caught the ball and Philadelphia recovered the ball inside the redzone.

To their credit the defense held the Eagles to another field goal, but Akers 27-yard attempt gave the Eagles a 16-13 lead.

Another Bears drive without a first down was magnified by a 21-yard return by Mitchell put the ball near midfield. Leading 16-13 and in field goal range Andy Reid decided to go for it on 4th and one. Duce Staley was stopped short giving the Bears hope for a victory.

A pass from Miller to Thomas for 13-yards was the second first down of the half and first not by penalty. Miller then missed threw three bad passes in a row to kill the drive including going behind an open Marty Booker that would have put the ball in Philly territory.

R.W. McQuarters' second pass interference penalty of the game moved the ball forward 16 yards. On the next play McNabb hit Todd Pinkston for 39 yards. With first down at the 14-yard line the Eagles failed to put the game out of reach with touchdown and had to settle for another field goal.

With three timeouts and 3:37 left in the game the Bears took the ball at their 25. By the two-minute warning the offense moved into the Eagle territory. A 13-yard catch by Thomas put the Bears at the 35-yard line. Miller then went to Booker for five yards and the team used their first timeout with 1:15 remaining. Leon Johnson converted a third and one with a short run up the middle. A Miller incompletion stopped the clock with 29 seconds on the clock. Another incompletion brought up 3rd down and 10 with 25 seconds left. Hugh Douglas broke through the line untouched and brought down Miller leaving an impossible 4th and 18 situation. Miller's 4th down attempt fell out of bounds.

At this point in the season the only team with a worse record than the Bears is the 1-7 Bengals.

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