The Seattle Seahawks vs Chicago Bears opened Week 2 of the preseason Thursday in Seattle.
Justin Fields, a second-year quarterback, looked sharp for the Bears on his first drive to start the game. Geno Smith, the Seahawks’ starter, struggled to pick off first downs on his first two drives.
Chicago was able establish the tone early to earn their second win in the preseason. Seattle was unable to score a touchdown for the entire quarter. The Seahawks finally scored on their third drive and then punted the ball away for the third.
Smith, who was vying to be the first player in the season, played the entire first period in an effort to prove his case.
Week 2 will continue Friday with three additional games before wrapping up Monday Night Football at 8 p.m. with the Atlanta Falcons at New York Jets. ET, ESPN).
Here are the top takeaways from Thursday night’s game, as well as the rest of Week 2’s preseason schedule.
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NFL preseason game Thursday, August 18
Bears: The Bears’ starter offense saw very little action during a short week. They were done after 10 plays in Seattle. Fields managed to put together an opening drive, which culminated in a field-goal — the first-team unit’s first scoring drives of the preseason. Fields was 5-for-7 for a total of 39 yards. Fields did not have more than three completions on any one of his offensive possessions in 2021. He also threw for 39 yards (or more) on an opening drive once (Week 6 against Green Bay Packers). This is a sign that his execution of the offense and operation are improving.
Fields is being pressed at the highest rate in the NFL (44% dropbacks), while Chicago is still trying out its offensive line, particularly with Teven Jenkins in the mix to start at right-guard. The new Bears scheme is already beginning to take shape. It was expected that there would be a lot of play-action, and bootlegs. On Thursday, two of Field’s pass attempts came on designed rollouts. One of them was a 19-yard completion to Cole Kmet. Fields attempted only 18 designed rollouts last year, with 78% of those resulting in two touchdowns. Courtney Cronin
Next gameCleveland, 7:15 p.m. ET, Aug. 27
Seahawks:After their loss to the Bears, the Seahawks’ quarterback contest seems to be nowhere near being decided. Smith had the opportunity to increase his lead with COVID-19, but he didn’t take advantage of it. Drew Lock was unable to play for what would have been his first summer start.
Seattle’s six possessions, excluding the final one in closing seconds of the second half, were completed with Smith under center. Smith threw five punts (3 of them after three and outs) and a missed 47 yard field goal. Smith was not at fault. Smith was also subject to three drops and many penalties. He also had Tyler Lockett & DK Metcalf on field for one possession. Then, Damien Lewis, starting left guard, was injured and unable to return to the field.
Smith watched the second half while wearing an ice wrap on his right knee. Smith’s performance with COVID was a major setback in Smith’s quest to win the title, but Smith’s lackluster night keeps the door open. Coach Pete Carroll will need Lock to put in a strong performance at Dallas’ preseason finale. He probably needs Smith to fail again. — Brady Henderson
Next gameDallas, 8 p.m. ET, Aug. 26
NFL preseason games Friday
Carolina Panthers at New England Patriots: 7 pm ET, NFL Network
New Orleans Saints at Green Bay Packers 8 p.m. ET
Houston Texans at Los Angeles Rams 10 p.m. ET, NFL Network
Saturday NFL preseason games
Denver Broncos at Buffalo Bills: 1 p.m. ET, NFL Network
Detroit Lions at Indianapolis Colts: 1:10 p.m. ET
Washington Commanders at Kansas City Chiefs, 4 p.m. ET, NFL Network
Tampa Bay Buccaneers vs. Tennessee Titans: 7 pm ET, NFL Network
Las Vegas Raiders vs Miami Dolphins: 7 pm ET
San Francisco 49ers at Minnesota Vikings 7 p.m. ET
Pittsburgh Steelers at Jacksonville Jaguars: 7 PM ET
Dallas Cowboys at Los Angeles Chargers: 10 p.m. ET, NFL Network
Sunday NFL preseason games
Philadelphia Eagles at Cleveland Browns: 1:15 p.m. ET, NFL Network
Cincinnati Bengals at New York Giants, 7 p.m. ET, NFL Network
Baltimore Ravens at Arizona Cardinals: 8 PM ET, Fox
Monday NFL Preseason Games
Atlanta Falcons vs. New York Jets: 8 PM ET, ESPN