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Safety Eric Weddle Puts Loss on His Shoulders After Missed Tackle

Posted Oct 15, 2017

Eric Weddle tried to strip Bears running back Jordan Howard, but instead ended up on his back while Howard ran down the sideline for a 53-yard run that set up the Bears' game-winning field goal.

Eric Weddle tried to play the hero and instead ended up the goat.

The Ravens Pro Bowl safety tried to strip Bears running back Jordan Howard in overtime, but Weddle instead ended up on his back and Howard rumbled 53 yards to set up Chicago’s game-winning field goal in a 27-24 loss at M&T Bank Stadium.

“That’s the deciding play, that’s why we lost,” Weddle said.

“It’s an unacceptable play. I’ve got to make the tackle, obviously. I had a good hand on the ball, but I just can’t do that in that situation. I’ve got to get him down.”

The Ravens forced a punt on the Bears’ first overtime possession, but after Baltimore’s offense squandered great field position, the defense was back on the field.

Chicago had a first-and-10 from its own 7-yard line when Howard ran left. He weaved past defensive end Chris Wormley, but Weddle charged forward to meet him in the hole.

Weddle got his left hand on the ball and tried to rip it out, but the 224-pound running back lowered his shoulder, secured the ball with both hands and ripped away from the 200-pound safety.

“I thought [the ball] was coming out,” Weddle said. “I slipped. But when I pulled it ... he’s a big back, so you just can’t [go for the strip] in that situation, you can’t ... you have to grab on. And then, if you’re going to do it, you have to hold on until the cavalry comes.”

While the Ravens allowed a franchise record 231 yards on the ground, Chicago had 159 rushing yards on 47 attempts (3.4 per carry) in regulation. Bears rookie quarterback Mitch Trubisky completed just six passes for 86 yards.

The defense hadn’t played lights out, but it was playing well enough and forced two critical turnovers in the second half.

Weddle got one himself when he punched the ball out of running back Tarik Cohen’s arms late in the third quarter. Cornerback Lardarius Webb got another when he hit Trubisky from behind to knock the ball out.

“We were playing so well on defense; it’s unfortunate we lose the game because of [my missed tackle],” Weddle said. “But I have big shoulders, so I can man up to my mistakes and move on from them.”

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