As the seconds wound down Sunday afternoon at FirstEnergy Stadium, Chicago Bears quarterback Justin Fields had been sacked more times than he had completed a pass.
That’s how badly the Bears rookie’s first career NFL start went in a 26-6 loss to the Cleveland Browns.
In the days after coach Matt Nagy announced Fields would start in Week 3 instead of injured veteran Andy Dalton, Bears nation was ecstatic over the chance for the team’s first-round pick to show what he can do in a full game.
Instead, the game quickly unraveled into a disaster.
Led by Myles Garrett’s 4 ½ sacks, the Browns defense sacked Fields nine times. Five other players had at least a share of a sack.
Meanwhile, Fields completed 6 of 20 passes for 68 yards and had three carries for 12 yards. Running back David Montgomery had 10 carries for 34 yards.
The Bears offense netted just 47 yards and didn’t find the end zone, settling for a pair of field goals by kicker Cairo Santos.
The Bears defense at least kept it close through three quarters, sacking Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield five times. Outside linebacker Khalil Mack had two and Robert Quinn had 1 ½.
But running back Kareem Hunt evaded tackles by Deon Bush, Khyiris Tonga and Eddie Jackson to break for a 29-yard touchdown run early in the fourth quarter as the Browns began to pull away.
Mayfield completed 19 of 31 passes for 246 yards and a touchdown, and the Browns piled up 215 yards on the ground behind running backs Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt. Odell Beckham Jr. had five catches for 77 yards in his return from an ACL injury.
The Bears defense, which had four takeaways to help Fields pull off the Week 2 victory over the Cincinnati Bengals despite a rough outing, didn’t force a turnover this time around.