“I think I should have played better,” Fields said after he completed 16-of-27 pass attempts for 174 yards, one touchdown, one interception and rushed for 43 yards.
“I didn't play as well as I wanted to. I think the drive before the second half ended, I think we should've got points right there so that's on me. And I mean, I just gotta play for my teammates. I think Bill [Lazor] was calling a great [game]. ... I'll take the blame. Unfortunately, I just didn't play how I needed to play for us to get the win. Again, I just need to be better.”
The Bears see it differently.
Head coach Matt Nagy explained in great detail on Monday how pleased he was with Fields’ play during both of Chicago’s scoring drives.
The Bears opened the game with an eight-play, 80-yard drive in which Fields went 3-for-3 and drew a critical pass interference penalty before Khalil Herbert eventually scored from one yard out.
“I put in my notes this morning after watching it the second time that that was play five, six and seven within the drive,” Nagy said. “Those three plays right there for Justin were special. The very first play he took a three-step drop, nice little hitch and a corner route to Darnell Mooney right on time. That was a professional throw, professional play. Great play by the line, everybody.
"The very next play, he comes back and they run a Cover 2 and he hits Allen Robinson in the side pocket there down the sideline. Great throw, great catch, great execution. Follows it back up with a good chip protection shot play, where the safety’s playing kinda tight, cutting a deep cross. And he goes with the post alert, which is what we teach him. All of that happened on time and in rhythm. When you can play quarterback and play on time and in rhythm, you see good things happen. That was awesome, those three plays right there. We got a pass interference in the end zone, we get the ball at the one, we score a touchdown. I thought for him that was great.”
Later, in the fourth quarter, Fields completed 5 of 5 passes as Chicago marched 80 yards on 10 plays to cut Green Bay’s lead to 17-14.
“We were challenged with some different things within that drive, whether it was a scramble, whether it was decision making, whether it was a throw,” Nagy said. “Those 11 plays right there, that was one of the better drives of the season. And for sure, I think, Justin’s best. All of that, when you go back and look at those plays, that’s what gets you excited is being able to see that. Now, we need to do more of that. And how do we get to that?”
Consistency, or the lack thereof, has been the problem.
The Bears' offense went two-plus quarters between scoring drives against the Packers. The unit is ranked 30th in the NFL in points per game (16.3) and last in yards per game (246.2).
“I think we’re working through all that right now,” Nagy said. “We’re not scoring enough. You need to score more, we understand that. How we get to that, we’re going through that identity. I think we all feel good about with the identity but now it’s like, within that identity, are we, what else do we need to do to complement that, and how are we going to get to that point? We’re working through all that. And now we’ve got a big challenge ahead of us in Tampa Bay [Sunday, 4:25 p.m. ET on CBS].”