Studs and duds from Bears’ Thanksgiving victory over Lions

Thanksgiving week can be stressful for anyone, but for the Chicago Bears, it was a nightmare. Rumors regarding Matt Nagy’s job status swirled throughout Halas Hall and reports surfaced about players being unhappy with the Bears head coach. It was a tumultuous few days but just like Thanksgiving, all of the stress went away when the day finally arrived.

The Bears did get off to a sluggish start, but rebounded nicely behind the steady arm of Andy Dalton. The veteran quarterback got the start with Justin Fields recovering from a rib injury and kept the rig on the road. He did just enough to help lead the Bears to a 16-13 win over the still winless Detroit Lions.

This Thanksgiving matchup featured some outstanding performers, but also some that might be as underwhelming as canned cranberry sauce. Here are this week’s studs and duds.

STUD: QB Andy Dalton

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Dalton didn’t have a high bar to clear against the Lions, but he was sharp for the most part and did enough to get the win, particularly to end the game. The Bears backup went 24-of-39 for 317 yards, a touchdown and an interception. He was able to command the offense and keep plays alive just enough, taking just one sack over the course of the game.

While he was solid for much of the game, Dalton exceled on the final drive of the game. Dalton led the Bears on an 18-play drive that ate up 8:30 of game clock. He utilized Damiere Byrd and Cole Kmet particularly and smartly took care of the football to set up the game-winning kick. Dalton will likely return to the bench as Fields is expected to be able to play next Sunday, but he was effective and delivered in crunch time, albeit against a lowly team.

DUD: RB David Montgomery

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This game was supposed to be the big return for David Montgomery. Though he had been back from his injury for a few weeks, Montgomery hadn’t had the type of performance we had come to expect prior to him getting hurt. Going against one of the…

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