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Report: Andy Dalton expected to start vs. Detroit Lions

It could be the battle of backup quarterback on Thanksgiving.

Baltimore Ravens v Chicago Bears Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

According to a report from NFL Network, the Chicago Bears are expected to start quarterback Andy Dalton this week for their Thanksgiving Day matchup with the Detroit Lions.

Dalton had lost his starting job to rookie Justin Fields earlier this season, but the 11th overall pick suffered a rib injury in Sunday’s game against the Baltimore Ravens and did not return to practice. In the Bears’ estimated injury report on Monday, Fields was listed as a non-participant.

The Bears offense has struggled all season, averaging just 16.3 points per game (29th), but Fields was starting to come into his own. Last Monday night, Fields completed 17-of-29 passes for 291 yards, one touchdown, and one interception—plus 45 rushing yards—as he nearly led Chicago to a comeback against the Steelers.

However, Fields struggled in the first half of Sunday’s game with the Ravens. Chicago was held scoreless as Fields completed only four-of-11 passes for 79 yards. Dalton, on the other hand, came in and led the Bears on two touchdown drives in the second half. For the entire season, Dalton has completed 65.8 percent of his passes for a 6.5 yards per attempt average, three touchdowns, and a single interception. Obviously, he doesn’t bring as much mobility to the Bears' offense, as he has only run for 38 yards on four carries.

As for the Lions, their quarterback situation for Thursday is still up in the air. Starting quarterback Jared Goff missed Sunday’s game with an oblique injury, with Tim Boyle making his first career start. However, Goff was listed as limited in Monday’s estimated injury report, suggesting he’s trending in the right direction. Coach Dan Campbell said Goff threw on Monday morning and looked healthier.

“He looked good enough to get him some reps today, but there again, we’re prepared. Tim will be ready to go if needed,” Campbell said.

Boyle, in his first career start, managed to complete 15-of-23 passes for just 77 yards and two interceptions as the Lions' offense struggled to move the ball all day against the Cleveland Browns.