The Chicago Bears and Philadelphia Eagles both lost close contests in Week 9, but not all was bad for two teams without too much in the way of playoff aspirations this season. Both teams used a top pick in this past year's draft on a game-changing offensive talent, and those two players showed out in Week 9.
As is the case every week, Pro Football Focus published their grades for all the teams and players that took part in Week 9, and Bears quarterback Justin Fields and Eagles wideout DeVonta Smith were tops at their respective positions.
Fields went 17-29 with 291 yards, adding a touchdown and an interception, to go along with eight carries for 45 yards on the ground. The pick wasn't great, but it was more of a testament to just how great Cameron Heyward has been as opposed to Fields' sloppy decision making.
Fields made big play after big play after big play down the stretch for the Bears, doing everything in his power to lead a comeback — all while resisting a wave of questionable officiating that was fully working against him. Darts down the field to Jimmy Graham and Allen Robinson, along with a beautiful 20-ish-yard time to Darnell Mooney to tie the game late in the fourth, put his full skill set on display and apparently made the analytics machines at PFF very happy.
Fields' 90.5 offensive grade beat out Baker Mayfield (89.8), Matt Ryan (84.4) and all the others, while his passing grade (88.5) was also on top of the bunch. It was by far the rookie's best outing of the season analytically, building upon his previous best in Week 8 (76.7 offensive grade).
In the receiving department, no wideout was better than DeVonta Smith. Though versatile playmakers Cordarrelle Patterson (95.5) and Kenyan Drake (92.9) had superior receiving grades out of the backfield than Smith's (92.3), Smith had the best overall offensive grade (92.6) out of 99 players who got at least four targets in Week 9. It was a welcome change from Smith, who had not found the end zone since Week 1 and had only one other 100-yard game on the season, back in Week 4. Coming off a one-catch game, this was exactly the type of performance that the Eagles fan base needed to see, and he came through.
Allen Robinson finished as the No. 5 wide receiver in terms of his receiving grade, which was also a refreshing sight to see and likely played a role in helping Fields to his awesome week.