Bears Coach Matt Nagy Discusses How To 'Stop The Bleed', Confidence

Josh Liss
November 04, 2019 - 9:57 am
Bears Coach Matt Nagy

Mitchell Leff/Getty Images

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CHICAGO (WBBM NEWSRADIO/AP) — A slow start cripples the Chicago Bears. Carson Wentz threw for 239 yards and one touchdown, Jordan Howard ran for 82 yards and a score and the Philadelphia Eagles held on for a 22-14 victory over the Chicago Bears on Sunday.

The Bears had just nine yards in the first half and trailed 19-0 before David Montgomery had a pair of 1-yard touchdown runs to make it a one-possession game in the fourth quarter.

But Philadelphia put it away with 16-play, 69-yard drive capped by Jake Elliott's 38-yard field goal. Wentz completed all four of his third-down passes on the drive for first downs.

The Eagles (5-4) have won two in a row after a pair of lopsided losses. The Bears (3-5) have lost four straight. Mitchell Trubisky was 10-of-21 for 125 yards and was sacked three times.

The Bears went three-and-out on their first five possessions, gaining minus-10 yards. They didn't get a first down until the final minute of the first half.

Wentz connected with Zach Ertz over the middle for a 25-yard touchdown pass to give the Eagles a 12-0 lead in the second quarter. Elliott missed the extra point wide right. Howard ran up the middle 13 yards for a touchdown on the opening drive of the third quarter, extending the lead to 19-0.

The Bears finally got going when Trubisky connected with Taylor Gabriel on a 53-yard pass to the Eagles' 9-yard line and Montgomery ran in from the 1. He leaped in from the 1 early in the fourth quarter as well, but the Bears couldn't complete the comeback.

The Eagles had a first down at the Bears' 5-yard line on their opening drive but settled for a 28-yard field goal by Elliott after Eddie Goldman sacked Wentz. Elliott kicked another 28-yarder on the next drive to make it 6-0.

WBBM Newsradio’s Josh Liss spoke with Bears coach Matt Nagy on Monday morning following the Bear's loss to the Eagles.

WBBM: Four straight losses leave you 3-5. We see familiar struggles on all sides of the ball, especially offense. What kind of first-aid is needed here if you are going to begin to stop the bleeding?

"When you go back and look at it, you know the first half, for us, just to stay ahead of the sticks, we need to get into second and six, second and five type areas, which keep you in a third down and minimum and for us, yesterday in that first half it was the other way. It was second and 14, second and 13, first and 20 - that's hard to recover from a good front like that, so we just really need to focus in on those first down plays," Nagy said.

WBBM: It seemed like it all went wrong in the first half, and in the second half, more of a competitive game. What kind of critique are you offering your quarterback Mitchell Trubisky - 10-of-21 for 125 yards and was sacked three times. He had the pretty long completion - 53-yarder to Taylor Gabriel - his top highlight, but how should we understand where Mitch is at with his game right now?

"The biggest thing right now is just all of us as a unit focusing in on faster starts. That's been an issue this year for us on offense, as we haven't had a whole lot of times where we have been able to jump out to a lead and let our defense pin their ears back, so you saw there in the second half we got a couple down field throws with him stuffing the box and we were able to take advantage of that, so just playing in unison in regards to just trying to not get hit early and get that run game going early - that alleviates a lot of pressure for the quarterback then," Nagy said.

WBBM: I know you are not going to take this the wrong way, but a lot of Bears fans are wondering how you were able to pull off three straight wins earlier this season with the way things are looking now. It wasn't that long ago. Does it feel like forever ago since you tasted victory and is there anything in those three wins that could make a difference in the last eight games? 

"It certainly feels like a long time ago," Nagy said. "When you go four weeks like we have, not winning that could be difficult and frustrating for all of us, but we only have one choice and that's to make sure that we stick together and this is apart of life, this is just a part of us to make sure we rally and never give up, we keep fighting, that's who we are and we just need to do everything we can for every play, every series, every drive, every game just to try and go 1-0 just as much as we can."

WBBM: You know the fans are along for all of that - the rollercoaster ride that has been this first half of the season. If we know anything about you, you are endlessly positive. You have got the will to want to find a way. We heard it from you during this slump especially. Where do you draw your confidence? I don't know if you are going family, friends, past coaches. Who is that voice in your ear that informs you how to deal with going through tough times like this?

"You are right, that's how we are as a team here. You have to be that way. For myself, I have just always been that way. That's who I am and I think it can be infectious," Nagy said. "It certainly helps all of us when you battle through times like this. It is that - it's family, it's friends, the ones that you know you can trust and count on. Of course it is the people in the building too. We got a lot of people who believe in one another, so we all rally off of each other and we try to stay as positive as we can."

WBBM: If you want to offer fans maybe a brief little pep talk before we let you go here, I know a lot of them would appreciate it.

"We appreciate all the fans who are hanging in there with us, supporting us. Trust me we want it just as bad as everybody," Nagy said. "We want to do it together and I think that the biggest thing is making sure we understand that and no one is giving up here. We are all going to fight until the very end, and I think that's what everybody can take from it and we look forward to this upcoming week."

The Bears take on the Detroit Lions at home on Sunday at noon for Week 10.

Listen weekly for more from the Bears Coaches Show at 7 p.m. on Mondays.