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Bears QB Andy Dalton hurts knee, but Bears don’t fear ACL tear

Dalton led the Bears to a touchdown on the first drive against the Bengals.

Andy Dalton and Justin Fields talk before Sunday’s game.
Andy Dalton and Justin Fields talk before Sunday’s game.
Ashlee Rezin/Sun-Times

Bears quarterback Andy Dalton hurt his left knee while scrambling for 14 yards in the second quarter Sunday at Soldier Field. After returning to play in the next series, Dalton walked to the Bears locker room and was ruled questionable to return.

Rookie Justin Fields took his place for the rest of the game.

Afterward, coach Matt Nagy said he didn’t believe Dalton tore his anterior cruciate ligament, which would have been season-ending.

“They’re looking at that [Monday] and the next couple days,” he said. “But I’m pretty sure we can rule that out.”

Dalton pointed to Fields to enter the game after he scrambled out of bounds along the Bears sideline. When Dalton emerged from the injury tent, he tested his injury on the sideline by jogging and practicing dropbacks. He then decided he could enter the game — and played four plays before the Bears punted.

Dalton was sharp against the Bengals, leading the Bears to a touchdown on their first drive. He completed an 11-yard scoring pass to Allen Robinson to go up 7-0 in the Bears’ home opener; unlike last week, Fields did not play on the first drive.

Dalton went 9-for-10 for 56 yards and scrambled twice for 25 yards against the Bengals, his former team. Dalton spent nine seasons in Cincinnati before joining the Cowboys as a backup last season and signing a $10 million contract with the Bears in March.