Bears edge Vikings 21-19 on late field goal

Monday, December 30, 2019

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Already sunk by midseason, the Chicago Bears were happy to wrap up a frustrating year with a late-game push for the win.

As far as feeling good for the Minnesota Vikings, body was the easy pick over mind.

Eddy Piñeiro's fourth field goal of the game came from 22 yards with 10 seconds left, giving the Bears a 21-19 victory on Sunday with the Vikings resting their regulars for the playoffs.

“We're going to learn from this," coach Matt Nagy said. “It could have been easy for them to do just that and not be fighters, but they did. That's the positive.”

Piñeiro, the latest attempt by the Bears (8-8) to solve their persistent kicking trouble, finished the season with 11 straight made field goals. Mitch Trubisky highlighted another unremarkable, conservative performance by hitting Riley Ridley for 34 yards on fourth-and-9 with 2:36 left from midfield to set up the winning kick.

“We just stuck together, believed and put one last drive together,” said Trubisky, who went 26 for 37 for 207 yards. “I think it was important to just go out on the right note.”

David Montgomery had 23 carries for 113 yards and a touchdown to cap a strong rookie season and help the Bears beat the Vikings (10-6) for the fourth consecutive time. Chicago dodged what would have been a fifth losing record in six years, after winning the NFC North in 2018 in Nagy's debut.

“I'm just happy I ended on a good note, and hopefully get ready to compete next year and win my job back,” Piñeiro said.

Minnesota missed a third 11-win season in six years under coach Mike Zimmer, but he was far more concerned about taking a healthy team to the playoffs.

“It was really hard,” Zimmer said of his decision to sideline the starters. “I actually didn't tell some of the guys until last night. I wanted them to prepare like they were getting ready to play.”

Ifeadi Odenigbo stripsacked Trubisky in the fourth quarter to pick up the ball and set up Dan Bailey's fourth field goal for a brief lead for the Vikings, but a replay review negated what would have been Odenigbo's second fumble return for a touchdown in three games after it was ruled that his knee was down after the recovery.

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