Bears' Fields to miss finale, ending shot at QB rushing mark

LAKE FOREST, Ill. (AP) — Justin Fields won't get a chance to break the single-season rushing record for an NFL quarterback.

Fields will miss the season finale against the Minnesota Vikings because of a strained hip and Nathan Peterman will start in his place, coach Matt Eberflus said Wednesday.

Fields finishes his second season with 1,143 yards rushing, 63 shy of the record of 1,206 set by Baltimore’s Lamar Jackson in 2019 during his MVP season.

Fields said after Sunday's blowout loss at Detroit his hip was sore. Eberflus said it was bothering him Monday. An MRI confirmed the strain and the team's medical staff ruled him out for the game against NFC North champion Minnesota on Sunday.

Eberflus said it is “not a long-term injury” and Fields would have been sidelined even if Chicago had a playoff game this week. The Bears (3-13), on a franchise-record nine-game losing streak, have a shot at the No. 1 pick in the draft. The only team with a worse record is Houston (2-13-1).

Eberflus insisted holding out Fields was a medical decision and not an attempt to boost the Bears' shot at the No. 1 pick.

“I would just go back to our normal operating procedure,” he said. “So what is it? It’s the medical staff, so he didn’t clear that hurdle. So if he’d have cleared that hurdle, then we’d have to go to the next one, which is the coaches. Is he functioning the way he can function to protect himself, right? Then it’s the player. Does he feel good about doing that. So he didn’t clear the first one. So, that’s just where it is.”

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Andrew Seligman, The Associated Press