In ‘roller-coaster game’ for Bears, QB Mitch Trubisky shows his progress
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MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. — Bears quarterback Mitch Trubisky knew what he saw on his worst throw Sunday against the Dolphins, but he still wanted to see it again.
‘‘I just thought the safety went with the over route,’’ Trubisky said. ‘‘He made a good play. I lost him when I stepped up, and I forced one in the red zone when I shouldn’t have.
‘‘I’m going to watch it again on film and make sure that is what happened and see what I saw. [But] I forced it and put my team in a bad position. I shouldn’t have thrown that pass.’’
That’s right. That’s exactly what happened when safety T.J. McDonald intercepted Trubisky’s throw to tight end Ben Braunecker in the end zone during the Bears’ 31-28 overtime loss to the Dolphins at Hard Rock Stadium.
A crazy game soon became insane after that interception.
That play was preceded by a debatable offensive-pass-interference penalty against tight end Trey Burton that negated a touchdown pass to running back Tarik Cohen.
And it was followed six plays later by receiver Albert Wilson’s 43-yard catch-and-run for a touchdown through the Bears’ defense.
‘‘That type of roller-coaster game, it can go either way at the end,’’ Trubisky said. ‘‘And today it didn’t go in our favor.’’
Trubisky and Bears’ offense did their part, even though running backs Jordan Howard and Cohen had costly fumbles.
The Bears’ defense — the one that was praised for being the best in the NFL for two weeks — didn’t against backup quarterback Brock Osweiler, Wilson and the Dolphins’ persistent running game.
Trubisky followed up his six-touchdown performance against the Buccaneers by completing 22 of 31 passes for 316 yards and three touchdowns for a 122.5 passer rating against a better defense.
It wasn’t a perfect performance. He overthrew rookie receiver Anthony Miller over the middle on the Bears’ third play from scrimmage. He forced a throw to Cohen in double coverage. And his end-zone interception was Jay Cutler-esque.
But Trubisky’s development was evident. There was more good than bad for him, even though Howard’s fumble on the goal line led to a scoreless first half for the Bears.
Trubisky completed 54- and 47-yard passes to receiver Taylor Gabriel. He threw a dart to receiver Allen Robinson for a 12-yard touchdown on the first play after cornerback Kyle Fuller’s interception in the third quarter. And he later connected with Robinson, who made a diving, highlight-reel catch, for a 21-yard gain to the Dolphins’ 3.
Miller’s wide-open 29-yard touchdown catch that gave the Bears a 28-21 lead with 3:17 left also was an example of Trubisky doing everything right, starting with being poised against a blitz at a crucial point in the game.
‘‘We picked up their pressure,’’ Trubisky said. ‘‘That was one of their pressures that they’ve shown in a got-to-have-it situation.’’
‘‘They caught [Robinson] to the one side, so they doubled him, and they tried to drop a linebacker out on Anthony, and that’s just not going to work,’’ he said.
‘‘[Miller] kind of turned [the linebacker] around, and I was able to put it in a spot where he could make a play,’’ he said.
The Bears seemingly had the Dolphins beaten, only they didn’t — not with the defense being as awful as it was. On the Dolphins’ next play, Wilson scored a 75-yard touchdown on a checkdown completion from Osweiler.
‘‘I thought [Trubisky] played well,’’ coach Matt Nagy said. ‘‘I thought he went through his progressions. He fought. He battled. We didn’t do well the first half. We didn’t score many points — zero in the first half. But what our guys did is they battled. We scored 21 points in eight minutes [in the third quarter].’’
It wasn’t enough, though.
The Bears’ defense will be searching for answers after getting shredded by Osweiler. But Trubisky answered questions about how he would respond to his own success.
‘‘We definitely got better in some areas,’’ he said. ‘‘[But] we just came out on the wrong side of it today.’’