Justin Fields would probably like to have this one back.
Playing a rivalry game in front of a prime-time audience on Sunday, the second-year quarterback made a miscue that wouldn't even qualify as a rookie mistake.
With 10:39 left in the second quarter, his Chicago Bears faced a third-and-10 against the Green Bay Packers. Fields took a shotgun snap, scrambled upfield then completed a first-down pass to Equanimeous St. Brown. Except it didn't count.
The line of scrimmage on the play was Chicago's 20-yard line. When Fields released his pass, he'd reached the 22. This, of course, is not legal.
— Pro Football Culture (@proftblculture) September 19, 2022
Illegal forward passes happen in the NFL, but they're generally close calls. This most certainly was not. The 5-yard penalty and loss of down resulted in a punt to concluded a three-and-out. The Packers converted on their ensuing possession to extend their lead to 17-7.
Not much is expected of the Bears, who did little this offseason to build around their quarterback. Plays like this don't help an already long-shot cause.