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Showdown Alert: Panthers at Bears

Posted By Smiley On Oct 28 2012 @ 5:47 pm In Chicago Bears | No Comments

Not many people, including me, predicted that this game would be as close as it came out to be. To win the game Jay Cutler had to take the Bears down the field from their own 22-yard line so that Robbie Gould could kick the game winner. But let’s look at what kept this game close.

Offense

The first half was horrendous for the Chicago Bears save for some nice runs for Matt Forte. Jay Cutler was sacked a total of 6 times, one of which being negated by an illegal use of hands penalty on Charles Johnson. It wouldn’t help the cause as 2 out of 3 of the bears first drives ended in a turnover. Jay Cutler threw a deep ball to a double covered Brandon Marshall which ended up being short and picked off by  Josh Norman. The next drive was productive as Matt Forte had two 10+ yard runs the second leading to a touchdown. However, the next drive ended in a sack/fumble by Charles Johnson. Several punts and another sack/fumble later and the Bears manage to get into field goal range but Robbie Gould misses it when trying to kick the ball into the wind. When the 4th Quarter starts the Bears are trailing 19-7 and driving down the field and end the drive with a Cutler strike to Kellen Davis for a touchdown.  After 8 seconds the Bears get help from Tim Jennings second interception, this one for a touchdown, giving them the lead 20-19. After failing at the 2-point conversion the Bears get the ball back with over 2 minutes to go and a timeout trailing 22-20. Jay Cutler calmly leads them down the field and  0:04 to go, this time Robbie doesn’t miss.

Defense

The defense had a rougher than usual game due to the Panthers backfield having a combined 31 carries and Newton taking shots down the field. The secondary gave up its biggest gain of the year with a 62-yard throw from Newton to Lafell only to be chased down by Jennings. The Panthers drove almost the entire length of the field several times, one resulting in a Cam Newton fumbled caused by Major Wright but recovered by Louis Murphy in the end-zone. The other trips down field resulted in 5 field goal attempts all being converted by Justin Medlock. Steve Smith received multiple targets while being covered by Tim Jennings for a good portion of the game and came out with 7 receptions and 118 yards. Jennings showed great break on the ball in recording his 5th and 6th interception, one resulting in the 6th returned INT of the year. The Bears had 2 sacks (Peppers).

[1]

Tim Jennings first of 2 interceptions against the Panthers.

 

Special Teams

The Panthers avoided kicking to Hester all day with every kickoff being a squib kick and one punt only going 6 yards before going out of bounds.

Other Statistics

  • Brandon Marshall –  9 rec. 98 yards
  • Earl Bennett – 3 rec. 47 yards
  • Devin Hester – 1 rec. 5 yards
  • Jay Cutler – 19/28 186 yards 1 TD 1 INT
  • Matt Forte – 15 carries 70 yards 1 TD
  • Tim Jennings led in tackles (8). Urlacher – 6

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