The terrible weather the Chicago Bears and San Francisco 49ers had to face on Sunday in the first regular-season game of the 2022 season was already going to be a headache but no one could have predicted the strange penalty called just before halftime.
The Bears were in field-goal range, trying to cut their deficit to just 7-3 before the whistle sounded. With 32 seconds left in the second quarter, Chicago was flagged for unsportsmanlike conduct for bringing a towel out when the ball was dead to wipe the field down – that’s apparently against NFL rules.
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Chicago was pushed out of field-goal range and failed to score in the first half at all, as the penalty confused fans reacted to the penalty.
Both teams were dealing with sloppy conditions during the game. Soldier Field appeared to have a drainage issue as the slop of the rain plagued the field, which just had new Bermuda grass put in.
BEARS, 49ERS PLAGUED WITH SLOPPY CONDITIONS AS TORRENTIAL RAIN SLAMS CHICAGO
According to FOX Weather, showers were set to plague Chicago for the entirety of the game. Over the last 14 seasons, the 49ers are 20-26-1 and the Bears are 36-39 when the winds are blowing at 10 mph and over and it looked like the gusts were going to continue to blow as well.
The 49ers were looking to build upon a fantastic run to the NFC Championship Game last season. Deebo Samuel broke out as a top player in the league but in the middle of the offseason the organization opted to start the Trey Lance era and kept Jimmy Garoppolo as his backup.
The Bears were one of the worst teams in the NFL last season. Justin Fields was given the reins as the full-time starting quarterback. The team took a hit on offense, losing Allen Robinson, Jakeem Grant, Marquise Goodwin and Damiere Byrd in the offseason.