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Know Your Foe: Chicago Bears

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CHARLOTTE – The Panthers are on the road this week for a Thursday night matchup.

Carolina (1-7) travels to face the Chicago Bears (2-7) at Solider Field on Thursday for an 8:15 p.m. game. The game will be streamed on Amazon Prime.

The Panthers are 3-7 all-time against the Bears in the regular season, including an 0-5 record in Chicago. The Panthers lost their last matchup against Chicago, 23-16, on the road in 2020. More on the series history can be found here.

Here's what to know about the Bears:

Justin Fields, Tyson Bagent

Uncertainty at quarterback

The Bears haven't had starting quarterback Justin Fields since mid-October after he injured his right thumb, and it's not certain whether or not he'll make his return Thursday night.

Fields led the Bears to one of their two wins this season, a 40-20 victory over the Commanders, and in six games, he put up 1,201 passing yards on a 61.7 completion percentage with 11 touchdowns and six interceptions, adding 237 yards and a touchdown on the ground.

Chicago has been going with rookie Tyson Bagent in Fields' place. Bagent has also won a game as the Bears' starter, helping them beat the Raiders 30-12. Through four games, he has totaled 697 passing yards on a 67.3 completion percentage with three touchdowns and six interceptions, along with 97 rushing yards and two rushing touchdowns.

Fields was listed as a limited participant in Chicago's injury reports on Monday and Tuesday.

DJ Moore

Former Panthers on offense

Former Carolina wide receiver DJ Moore joined Chicago's roster in the Panthers' trade for the No. 1 overall pick. He has become the Bears' leading pass catcher, totaling 735 yards on 47 catches with five touchdowns this season.

Former Carolina running back D'Onta Foreman is the Bears' leading rusher, even though he's only played in five games. With running back Khalil Herbert hitting injured reserve with an ankle injury, Foreman took over the duties and has rushed for 287 yards and two touchdowns on 65 attempts, paired with 43 yards on seven catches with a receiving touchdown.

Herbert, who returned to practice for Chicago this week, put up 272 yards on 51 attempts with 83 receiving yards and a touchdown in five games before his injury.

The Bears also utilize tight end Cole Kmet in the offense, as he's put up 374 yards and five touchdowns on 41 catches. Wide receiver Darnell Mooney is another player to watch, as he has hauled in 307 yards on 20 catches with a touchdown.

Chicago's offense ranks fourth in rushing (135.3 yards per game), 24th in passing (190.6 yards per game), and 19th in scoring (20.9 points per game).

TJ Edwards

Strong rushing defense

The Bears have allowed the fourth-fewest rushing yards in the NFL this season, as their opponents average 79.7 yards on the ground all season. They're ranked first in yards per attempt at 3.3.

Two teams – the Buccaneers in Week 2 and the Chiefs in Week 3 – have rushed more than 100 yards against Chicago. Most recently, they held the Saints to 87 yards on the ground.

They're less efficient against the pass, allowing teams 256.9 passing yards (28th in the NFL), and have allowed 26.9 points per game, 28th in the league. They haven't found much success rushing the passer, as their 10 total sacks on the season rank last in the NFL.

The Bears' leading tacklers include linebacker TJ Edwards (100), linebacker Tremaine Edmunds (63), and defensive back Tyrique Stevenson (54). Defensive lineman Justin Jones leads in tackles for loss with six, followed by Edwards and defensive lineman DeMarcus Walker with five each.

Carolina is 4-6 all-time against the Chicago Bears.