Chicago Bears quarterback Justin Fields suffered a shoulder injury on his non-throwing arm in a 27-24 loss against the Atlanta Falcons in Week 11.
Fields is currently listed as questionable by the Bears for an upcoming road game against the New York Jets in Week 12. Veteran quarterback Trevor Siemian is the only backup currently on the roster and would start in place of Fields if he’s not ready to play against the Jets.
The injury report comes out Wednesday and right now it’s day-to-day,” said Bears head coach Matt Eberflus. “We’ll see where he is on Wednesday, and go from there.”
The Jets (6-4) are -4.5 favorites at home against the Bears. But head coach Robert Saleh is considering benching quarterback Zach Wilson after two dismal performances in their last two losses, including last Sunday’s game against the New England Patriots.
The Bears are in the middle of a four-game losing streak. After beginning the season 2-1, the Bears went 1-7 over the last eight weeks. With a 3-8 record, the Bears sit in last place in the NFC North. They have two more games on the schedule before a bye in Week 14.
The Bears are one of the long shots at the bottom of the NFL futures board over at DraftKings. The Bears are +100000 odds to win Super Bowl LVII, and just one more loss away from getting taken off the board.
Fields’ Late-Game Injury Against the Falcons
The Bears trailed the Falcons by three points late in the fourth quarter. On a quarterback sweep, Falcons’ cornerback Dee Alford tackled Fields and forced him out of bounds. Fields fell on his left shoulder and was slow to get up.
“I was just hurting after that,” Fields said after the game.
The Bears were unable to pull off a comeback and lost 27-24.
When the game ended, the Bears quickly whisked Fields off the field on a medical cart to evaluate his shoulder injury and take an X-ray.
The doctors took the picture, and they said they were going to talk about it and go over it and just let me know later,” Fields told The Athletic.
Fields had been nursing a left shoulder injury from earlier in the season, and the latest injury was a major concern.
Dr. David Chao, the former team doctor for the Los Angeles Chargers, suggested that Fields didn’t suffer a dislocated shoulder, but thought he had a separated shoulder or an EC joint injury.
Full video https://t.co/EXsyyGd7MS pic.twitter.com/gTvnrtj90Q
— Sports Injury Central (@SICscore) November 22, 2022
Shutting Down Fields to Get the #2 Pick?
The Bears are considering not playing Fields in the next two games so he gets three weeks of rest, including the bye week. However, there are some whispers coming out of the Windy City that suggest the Bears could shut Fields down for the remainder of the season to preserve his health and secure a high pick in the 2023 NFL Draft.
Four out of their final six games are against winning teams, and the Bears have a 0.2% chance to qualify for the playoffs, according to FiveThirtyEight’s NFL postseason projections.
The Houston Texans are the worst team in the NFL with a 1-8-1 record. The Bears are tied with the Carolina Panthers (3-8) for the second-worst record in the league.
Six other teams have three wins with a 3-7 record, including the Jacksonville Jaguars, Cleveland Browns, Pittsburgh Steelers, Denver Broncos, Las Vegas Raiders, and the defending champion Los Angeles Rams.
Fields Finally Found His Groove
Fantasy football owners were gushing about Fields’ resurgence over the last five weeks. Fields looked horrible in the first month, accumulating 22.54 total points in ESPN PPR fantasy leagues. He averaged 5.6 points per game through Week 4, even though the Bears were 2-2.
In the last five weeks, Fields averaged 30.6 fantasy points per game after the Bears tweaked their playbook and called more running plays for him. The more that Fields rushed, the better he looked in the passing game.
Fields completed only 59.6% of his passes for 1,642 yards, 13 touchdowns, and eight interceptions this season. However, he’s emerged as a legit running threat. Fields rushed 122 times for 834 yards and seven touchdowns in 11 games. He’s averaging 6.8 yards per rush.
Over the last five games, Fields racked up six rushing touchdowns, including at least one per game since Week 7. He posted back-to-back weeks where he rushed for at least 147 yards per game. He torched the Miami Dolphins for 178 yards and a touchdown in Week 9 before gashing the Detroit Lions for 147 yards and two touchdowns in Week 10.
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