John Fox regrets not challenging spot on Osweiler sneak

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Coach John Fox on what the film review of the Bears’ opener showed: “Just really how close we are,” he said. (David J. Phillip/AP)

Upon further review, John Fox would have challenged the questionable spot after Brock Osweiler’s third-and-one quarterback sneak in Sunday’s 23-14 loss at NRG Stadium.

Osweiler looked like he didn’t gain an inch on the play, yet the fortuitous spot gave the Texans a first down. They scored a touchdown on Osweiler’s wide-receiver screen to rookie  Will Fuller two plays later to take a 20-14 lead with 12:44 left in the fourth quarter.

“[In] hindsight, I wish I would have challenged it,” Fox said Tuesday at Halas Hall. “If I had the ability to see what people see at home — with yellow lines and blue lines — we might have won it.”

Fox said his previous experience with measurement plays impacted his on-the-spot decision to not challenge the play.

“Whenever there’s a scrum like that in a quarterback sneak, my experience has not been good as far as the spot specifically,” Fox said. “If they ruled it a first down, if there’s no irrefutable evidence, it doesn’t change.”

Texans review

Fox’s biggest takeaway from the opener?  “Just how really close we are,” he said. “There were opportunities [in all three phases]. We got a ball on the ground — Akiem Hicks made a great play [forcing a fumble] and it bounced to them. We get our hand on the ball on a critical field goal [Sherrick McManis’ deflection], it goes over the [crossbar] by a foot.  So just how close it is and yet how much we have left to do.”

Plug and play

Newcomer Josh Sitton had an impressive debut at left guard Sunday — especially considering he signed with the Bears on Sunday and didn’t join the team until Monday.

“I think he did pretty remarkable — especially on the road, noisy stadium, silent count,” Fox said. I thought he did an outstanding job and he’ll just get better.”

Injury update

The initial, though unofficial, injury report is good after the season opener. Fox reported “nothing new … injury wise” following the Texans game. The Bears begin practice for the Eagles on Thursday.

Roster moves

The Bears signed former Purdue running back/kick returner Raheem Mostert to their practice squad and cut running back Senorise Perry and offensive tackle Laurence Gibson. They have one open spot on their practice squad.

Mostert averaged 26.0 yards on 88 returns at Purdue — including returns of 99 and 100 for touchdowns.

Thinking ahead

So much for taking them one at a time. Fox said the Bears not only are “pretty far along” in their preparation for the Eagles on Monday night at Soldier Field, but “we’ll even start a little bit on  Dallas because we’ll be on a short week the following week.”

Welcome, rookie

Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz, the second overall pick in the draft, was a winner in his NFL debut last week — 22-of-37 for 278 yards, two touchdowns and no interceptions for a 101.0 passer rating in a 29-10 victory over the Browns. 

“He showed good composure. He can make all the throws,” Fox said.

The Bears faced Buccaneers rookie Jameis Winston in Week 16 last year and won 26-21 in Tampa. The last quarterback they faced with as little experience as Wentz, though, was the Colts’ Andrew Luck, who was making his NFL debut in the 2012 season opener. Luck was 23-of-45 for 309 yards, one touchdown and three interceptions for a 52.9 rating in a 41-21 Bears victory.

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