The Bears starters had the night off in Friday night's preseason contest
The Chicago Bears continued the 2019 preseason this past Friday night. And while it ended with a 32-13 defeat at the hands of the New York Giants, there were some developments to come from this game. Some were negative, some were positive, but in the end, we're getting a clearer view of how the Bears will approach the 2019 season. Here are five observations from Bears vs. Giants.
1. The players at the top of the depth chart sit this one out
The Bears starters and most of the second unit players didn't participate in Friday's exhibition. That means that players such as David Montgomery, Cordarrelle Patterson, Ben Braunecker, and Bilal Nichols (to name a few) didn't take the field. Head coach Matt Nagy decided to use this game to evaluate the players at the bottom of the depth chart, and keep his top guys fresh. Bears fans blasted Nagy for doing this for a good portion of the 2018 preseason, but we all know how that turned out once the regular season began.
2. Daniel Jones impresses against the Bears defense
The sixth overall selection of the 2019 NFL Draft continues to turn Giants fans into believers. Jones seemingly had his way against the Bears defense as he completed 11-of-14 passes for 161 yards and threw for the Giants second touchdown of the night. Jones averaged 11 yards per pass, had a passer rating of 138.4, and led the Giants on two scoring drives. It's still too early to tell if the Duke alum can replace Eli Manning as the starter in New York, but Jones is already making a quick adjustment to the NFL.
3. Eddy Pineiro has won the kicking competition for now
The former Oakland Raider successfully made both of his attempts against New York from 41 and 27 yards, respectively. Elliott Fry missed a 47-yarder in the first quarter that would have cut the Giants lead to one point (7-3 at the time). In two exhibition games thus far, Piniero has converted 3-of-4 field goal attempts while Fry has only made one of his two (with a PAT). On Sunday, the Bears made the decision to cut Fry, seemingly handing the job to Pineiro. But should Pineiro's performance falter, the team could still bring in a veteran to restart the competition.
4. Players who made the most of their opportunities
With the top guys taking the night off, the Bears bench players took this opportunity to impress coach Nagy and his staff. Some of those who stood out were running backs Ryan Nall (11 total touches, 44 yards from scrimmage) and Kerrith Whyte Jr. (one-yard touchdown run), wide receiver Javon Wims (led the Bears with five catches for 64 yards), defensive end Jonathan Bullard (fumble recovery), linebackers Josh Woods and Joel Iyiegbuniwe (15 combined tackles), and cornerback Clifton Duck (62-yard interception return). These players have two more games to leave their mark before final roster decisions are made.
5. The turnover game
During these two preseason games the Bears defense has forced six takeaways. They registered an interception and two fumble recoveries against the Carolina Panthers two weeks ago, and they picked up two more fumbles to go with Duck's huge interception against the Giants. Takeaways were a big part of the defense under coordinator Vic Fangio last season, and so far new play-caller Chuck Pagano has kept the trend going.
— Gabe Salgado is part of the Athlon Contributor Network. He's also written for NBC, Fox, The Sporting News, The Sports Journal, The Undefeated and Complex. He's a co-host of The Rewind Sports: 60. Follow him on Twitter @GabeSalgado82.
(Top photo courtesy of www.chicagobears.com)