(Photo credit: Jamie Sabau-USA TODAY Sports)
Wil Lutz converted a 51-yard field goal with 1:46 left to cap the Denver Broncos' comeback from a 21-point third-quarter deficit, edging the host Chicago Bears 31-28 Sunday in a battle of previously winless teams.
In earning Sean Payton his first win as their coach, the Broncos scored 24 unanswered points to end the game. They tied the score at 28 with 6:55 left when Jonathon Cooper scooped up a fumble by Justin Fields and returned it 35 yards for a touchdown.
That was the first of three big plays for a defense that allowed 70 points last week in a 50-point loss at Miami. The Broncos stopped Khalil Herbert for no gain on fourth-and-1 at the Denver 18 with 2:52 left and then sealed the outcome when Kareem Jackson picked off Fields at the Broncos' 36 with 32 seconds remaining.
Russell Wilson completed 21 of 28 passes for 223 yards and three scores for Denver (1-3). He connected on a 48-yard pass to Marvin Mims Jr. that set up Lutz's go-ahead kick.
The Bears (0-4) wasted a big day from Fields, who was 28-of-35 for 335 yards and four touchdowns. They lost their 14th straight game dating to October 2022.
Denver struck first with Wilson's 18-yard touchdown pass to Jaleel McLaughlin at the 5:08 mark of the first quarter, capping an 84-yard drive that used up more than six minutes. The rest of the half's remainder was all Chicago.
Fields tied the game on the first play of the second quarter, finding DJ Moore for a 29-yard strike. He then cashed in a short field by hitting Cole Kmet on a 22-yard touchdown pass with 11:44 left in the half. The margin grew to 21-7 when he found Kmet again on a 3-yard scoring strike with 6:08 remaining.
The Bears upped their lead to 28-7 with a drive of nearly 9 1/2 minutes on their first possession of the third quarter, Fields throwing to Khalil Herbert for a 2-yard touchdown.
Denver started its rally on its next drive as Brandon Johnson caught a 4-yard scoring pass from Wilson. The quarterback hit Courtland Sutton for a 13-yard TD strike early in the fourth quarter.
Herbert rushed for 103 yards on 18 carries for Chicago and Moore finished with eight receptions for 131 yards in defeat.
--Field Level Media