Bears explore new depths in loss to Jaguars

Maybe the only winner Sunday was Jay Cutler, whom the Bears clearly aren’t inclined to turn to again this season unless forced.

They’re being pushed into desperate times after they dominated the lowly Jaguars at Soldier Field only to give the game away in the closing minutes, losing 17-16 to a team that has been inept on the road under coach Gus Bradley.

The Bears held a clear edge in nearly every phase, finishing plus-two in turnovers and controlling the ball for 35 minutes, 47 seconds for an advantage of more than 11 minutes. They ran 22 more offensive plays than the Jaguars. Brian Hoyer went over 300 passing yards for the fourth consecutive game and ran his streak of attempts without an interception to 189. But the numbers proved hollow once again and the offense remained inept in the red zone despite No. 1 wide receiver Alshon Jeffery being prominently targeted.

John Fox’s team is reeling at 1-5 and could soon find itself in worse shape as it plays at the Packers on Thursday night and then hosts the division-leading and unbeaten Vikings on Oct. 31. That could be a quick journey to 1-7, a record the Bears have not had at the halfway point of the season since 2000. The Bears have finished in the cellar of the NFC North for two straight years and the third-place Lions are two games ahead.

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