After an incredible 347 days without a win in the National Football League (NFL), the Chicago Bears finally ended their drought with a 40-20 victory over the Washington Commanders on Thursday Night Football.
The Bears had been waiting for victory for nearly a year, losing a staggering 14 straight games in franchise history, but as the final buzzer blew, Chicago fans finally had something to cheer about.
With the Bears under a lot of pressure after starting the season 0-4, Chicago traveled to Washington to face the 2-2 Commanders at FedEx Field and got off to a strong start.
Within three minutes of the game, struggling quarterback Justin Fields threw a perfect touchdown pass to star wide receiver DJ Moore, giving Chicago a crucial early advantage.
After early scores and second-quarter touchdowns from Moore and tight end Cole Kmet (both off Fields passes), the Bears never looked back, helping Chicago lead 27-3 at halftime.
Although the Commanders tried to get back into the game with a second-half counterattack, it was not enough. Moore connected on a 56-yard reception from Fields for his third touchdown of the night to seal the victory.
“We just need a win to put the magic in our favor,” Moore told reporters after his incredible night, which saw him finish with eight catches for 230 yards. “It feels great to get that first win.”
Fields also expressed the players’ relief. The 24-year-old was criticized for his early-season performance but bounced back against the Commanders, throwing for 282 yards and four touchdowns.
“It just feels good. Seeing all the hard work pay off, especially getting the voiceover after everything that’s happened this year,” Fields said. “It feels good when you can say your hard work paid off.”
Fields said the win was a “relief” after the Commanders looked like they were going to come back in the second half.
The win was especially historic for Fields, as he became just the fourth quarterback since the 1970 AFL-NFL merger to throw for 5,000 yards and rush for 1,500 yards in his first 30 starts. Michael Vick, Lamar Jackson and Jalen Hurts join the ranks. .
The win came on the same day that legendary Bears linebacker Dick Butkus passed away at the age of 80.
Butkus’ family released a statement saying he “passed away peacefully in his sleep” after spending the night at his home in Malibu, California. Bears posted on social mediaread.
“A Bears legend, he’ll never be forgotten, and we played for him tonight, so this game tonight was about him,” Fields said after the game at Butkers.
While the Bears reveled in the locker room after the game, the mood in the Commander’s camp was less than pleasant.
NBA legend and part-owner of the Washington Commanders Magic Johnson took to X (formerly known as Twitter) to express his displeasure with the loss.
“There was no intensity or firepower in the Commanders’ game tonight. We had no game in the first half and trailed 27-3 at halftime.” Johnson says. “The hole was too big to climb out of, which is why we ended up losing 40 to 20.”
The Bears will face the Minnesota Vikings in their next game, and the Commanders will look to bounce back against the Atlanta Falcons.