CHICAGO (CBS/AP) — With rookie Justin Fields still nursing injured ribs, Andy Dalton will get the start at quarterback on Thursday when the Bears visit the Lions on Thanksgiving Day.
Head coach Matt Nagy confirmed Tuesday Dalton will get the start on Thursday, while Fields most likel will be inactive. That would make Nick Foles the backup against the Lions.READ MORE: Jury Begins Deliberations In Jussie Smollett Trial After Closing Arguments Conclude
Nagy said he hopes Fields will be healthy enough to return as the starter for their Week 13 matchup against the Arizona Cardinals on Dec. 5.
“We’ve just got to see where his ribs are at. I think it’s day-by-day. He’s been doing pretty good, and we’ve just got to keep an eye on that,” Nagy said.
Fields left Sunday’s game against the Ravens after injuring his ribs in the third quarter.
The Bears (3-7) were hoping Fields would build on his best outing as a pro on Sunday against the Ravens. Instead, he struggled before heading to the locker room in the third quarter, and the Bears lost their fifth straight game.
Fields completed just 4 of 11 passes for 79 yards after throwing for a career-high 291 yards at Pittsburgh two weeks earlier. His final play was a 6-yard scramble on third-and-11 at the Chicago 45 on the opening drive of the third quarter.
It’s not the first time Fields has injured his ribs.
He took a shot to them in the national semifinals last year when Clemson linebacker James Skalski nailed him in the right side of his torso. Skalski was ejected for targeting because he led with the crown of his helmet.READ MORE: 3 Critically Injured In Crash Outside Midlothian Driver's Service Facility
Fields missed one play and finished with six touchdown passes in Ohio State’s 49-28 victory. The ribs bothered him in the national championship game, and the Buckeyes lost 52-24 to Alabama.
The Bears are banking on Fields developing into a star after trading up nine spots with the New York Giants to draft him with the No. 11 overall pick. A big part of that is keeping him healthy. But he also needs snaps.
After replacing Fields against the Ravens, Dalton threw two touchdowns, including a 49-yarder to an open Marquise Goodwin in the closing minutes.
Dalton found Goodwin deep down the middle on fourth-and-11 to cap a 75-yard drive and put Chicago on top 13-9 with 1:41 remaining. Even though the 2-point conversion pass failed, the Bears appeared to be in good shape.
Dalton, who started the first two games before a knee injury in Week 2 against Cincinnati, came in with 8:46 left in the third quarter and quickly threw a 60-yard touchdown to Darnell Mooney on a screen to give the Bears a 7-6 lead. The veteran was 11 for 23 for 201 yards.
But Baltimore answered Goodwin’s go-ahead score with a 72-yard touchdown drive. Freeman ran it in after backup quarterback Tyler Huntley’s 29-yard pass to Sammy Watkins put the ball on the 3, and the Ravens came out on top even without their best player, quarterback Lamar Jackson, missed the game with an illness.
Huntley completed 26 of 36 passes for 219 yards in his first career start. The second-year pro who was undrafted out of Utah also threw an interception and got sacked six times in his fifth pro appearance.
It didn’t help that Bears were missing star linebacker Khalil Mack, who is expected to have season-ending foot surgery this week. Defensive tackle Akiem Hicks (ankle) and receiver Allen Robinson (hamstring) were also unavailable, and it’s unclear if they’ll return on Thursday.MORE NEWS: Police Warn Of Armed Robberies And Carjackings In Lakeview And Lincoln Park
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