Chicago Bears quarterback Todd Collins, is what we thought he was.
In a first quarter that showed tons of scoring promise and hope, the Chicago Bears quickly took the lead on its first possession with Bears running back Matt Forte scoring a touchdown on the first drive with an 18-yard run. A second Forte touchdown quickly ensued after the third-year running back outran Carolina’s defense with a 68-yard touchdown.
This was a career long run for Forte, who suffered a sophomore slump last season. Many lost faith in him, but after today, I’m sure that’s been restored.
A 28-yard field goal by Bears kicker Robbie Gould also came in the first quarter, but after that, the wheels started to come off for Collins. He threw three interceptions in four series, including one at the goal line to a very large Panthers defenseman.
Seriously Collins, did you really think that guy played offense?
What could have been a 17-10 game, the Bears entered the lockerroom 17-3 for the half. With a third quarter full of continued Collins’ mishaps, the Bears finally put Collins and the fans out of their misery by inserting the team’s No. 3 quarterback Caleb Hanie at the 2:06 mark.
With Hanie now at the helm, came the Bears’ first points since the first quarter: two field goals by Gould in the fourth quarter, including a career-long 53-yarder and a 43-yarder.
The career back-up quarterback Collins, starting for the first time since 2007, completed six of 16 passes for 32 yards with four interceptions and a 6.2 passer rating.
The ghost of Rex Grossman was sadly alive today.
Forte amassed a career high of 166 yards on 22 carries, with two touchdowns. He also had two receptions for 22 yards.
It was nice to see the running game again.
The Bears defense once again shined, including three sacks and seven tackles by defensive end Israel Idonije, by only allowing the Panthers (0-5) 147 total yards.
The team also made some much-needed changes to the O-line by starting rookie J’Marcus Webb at right tackle and Edwin Williams at left guard. Injured left tackle Chris Williams is recovering from a hamstring injury but there’s been no timetable regarding his return.
Carolina rookie quarterback Jimmy Clausen had another poor game (including boos by the fans in the fourth quarter), going nine of 22, passing for an anemic 61 yards, one interception and five sacks. He was benched in the fourth quarter and with Matt Moore coming in as his replacement, he didn’t fare much better.
With the win, the Bears hold onto their division lead. Next week the team returns home and hosts the Seattle Seahawks (2-2). If Cutler doesn’t return, let’s hope the Bears start Hanie.
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Written by Debbie Baratz