The Bears’ rushing attack was resurgent in their 34-30 loss Sunday to the Lions — until they needed one yard. Then it reverted to what it has been for most of coach Matt Nagy’s tenure.
Trailing by four, the Bears faced fourth-and-one after receiver Allen Robinson stepped out of bounds just short of the Lions’ 20-yard line with 16 seconds left. In the shotgun, quarterback Mitch Trubisky handed off right to running back David Montgomery, who ran over left guard and was stuffed by Lions nose tackle Kevin Strong.
‘‘I came up short,’’ Montgomery said. ‘‘I let the fellas down. That’s something I’m going to rewatch and figure out what I can do to get that. At that point, it just takes will and anything you’ve got left in the tank, and I let them boys down. So that’s on me.’’
Montgomery was a half-yard short. Officials confirmed as much with replay.
‘‘If you are telling me it’s one yard and we are handing the ball to David Montgomery, my money is on him every time — and our offensive line,’’ Trubisky said. ‘‘It doesn’t matter what the situation is, so . . . you have to give [the Lions] credit. They made the play, we didn’t; it’s as simple as that. If we had to do it all over again, my money would be on David and our offensive line.’’
In his second game back from a concussion, Montgomery was explosive in the first half, running 11 times for 62 yards and catching one pass for 10. In the second half, he ran only six times for 10 yards. The Lions began focusing on stopping the run, Montgomery said, by running inside linebackers into lanes.
The Bears, of course, could have handed the ball to Montgomery on third-and-four about 90 seconds earlier. Instead, Trubisky dropped back to pass and got the ball knocked out of his hands deep in Bears territory, setting up the Lions’ go-ahead touchdown.
‘‘What was going through my head was what was going through everybody’s head: Just get a first down, no matter who gets the ball,’’ said Montgomery, whose two rushing touchdowns doubled his season total. ‘‘We came up short on that one.’’