Chicago Bears 2012 Rewind: The Monday Nightmare vs the Niners


One of the most common lessons learned in life is that we must learn from our mistakes. The best way to go forward in life and football is to look back. We all learn from the past to build on the future. From now on, every week I will be giving you a retrospective look at every one of last season’s games until the start of the season.

November 19, 2012; San Francisco, CA, USA; San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick (7) runs past Chicago Bears defensive tackle Stephen Paea (92) in the second quarter at Candlestick Park. Mandatory Credit: Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports

This game was an absolute disaster. The picture sums it up. Colin Kaepernick had a field day in his first career NFL start against the vaunted Bears defense. On the other side of the ball, Jason Campbell got the start for the concussed Jay Cutler. To put things lightly, he was completely useless. Here’s the ugly boxscore

Game Summary

From the first snap of the game, Colin Kaepernick looked poised. He led the niners to a field goal on the opening drive. When the Bears got the ball, they were abruptly forced to punt after Jason Campbell was sacked on third and 2 for a ten yard loss. On the ensuing 49ers possession, Kaepernick was a perfect 3/3 on a four play drive that culminated in a niner touchdown. When the Bears got the ball back, they managed a few nice plays, but they were eventually forced to punt again. That was Kaepernick’s cue to lead his team on an 8 play, 96 yard drive for a touchdown. The 49ers added a field goal and a few more Campbell beatings before the end of the half.

The second half picked up the game where it had been left off, with Kaepernick shoving the ball down the throats of the Bears supposedly great defense. After a big 37 yard pass to Mario Manningham, Kaepernick completed a 10 yard touchdown strike to Michael Crabtree. When the Bears got the ball, something amazing happened. After being shut out for 2 quarters, the Bears actually had a decent drive. It ended with a Brandon Marshall touchdown. It was the first touchdown the Bears had in over six quarters. And that was the bright spot in the game.

 The rest of the game was pathetic. Campbell was sacked more and threw another interception. The team looked embarrassing. But there was one play in particular that summed up the entire game for me. It’s horrifying ridiculousness gives it the honor of play of the game.

The Bears lost, 32-7. No one on the Bears is worthy of being named the game’s MVP, so I’m going to go ahead and give the honors to Colin Kaeparnick and Aldon Smith. Kaeparnick showed the world that he was special in this game, and Aldon Smith made Jason Campbell’s life a living hell, by sacking him 5.5 times. Smith had more sacks than Devin Hester, the Bears leading receiver, had catches.

 Things to learn

Being fat isn’t the only requirement for being a good offensive lineman. You also have to be strong, agile, and smart. The Bears linemen

November 19, 2012; San Francisco, CA, USA; Chicago Bears quarterback Jason Campbell (2) reacts after an injury during the third quarter against the San Francisco 49ers at Candlestick Park. The 49ers defeated the Bears 32-7. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

looked out of place in this game. When you have a weak offensive line, nothing goes well for your team, especially if the quarterback is starting his first game in the middle of the season. On the other side of the ball, the Bears defense was helpless against a new quarterback because the guy was getting amazing protection. I’m not taking anything away from Kaeparnick; the guy is speedy, accurate, and smart. I also love him for beating the Packers, but that is not the point. He would not have played nearly as well if he was protected by the Bears line. Jason Campbell earns a lot of credit in my book for putting up with the pain he endured. The offensive line is the most important unit on the field. I hope that this year, the Bears will fix theirs.