Chicago Bears Week 5: Takeaways
John Rieger-USA TODAY Sports
For the second week in a row Jay Cutler led the Bears to a game winning scoring drive in the last two minutes of the game. This time it ended with a touchdown pass to Matt Forte with just 0:18 seconds left on the clock. It capped off the Bears second touchdown drive in the last 3:05 of the game and gave the Bears an 18-17 victory.
The Bears were down 17-3 at halftime and the Chiefs were marching down the field with ease to start the second half until star RB Jamal Charles left the game with a knee injury. The Chiefs drive stalled without Charles, then Pernell McPhee blocked a field goal attempt keeping the Chiefs off the scoreboard. From that point on the Bears scored 15 unanswered points to pull out the victory.
The Bears didn’t play that well overall but did just enough to win. There were way too many penalties and the O-line kept Cutler on the run almost every time he dropped back to pass. At one point in the first half I thought Cutler would be lucky to make it through the game in one piece. The Bears D-line did manage to sack Alex Smith three times, but for most of the day couldn’t generate any pressure on the Chiefs QB. The Bears struggled in coverage at times as well giving up short passes over the middle and for some reason giving their wide receivers huge cushions despite the fact that the Chiefs haven’t thrown a deep pass in like two years. It wasn’t pretty and each unit made their share of mistakes, but the Bears somehow managed to pull this one out with some clutch play from Jay Cutler and his no-name WRs late in the game.
The Chiefs gave the Bears a scare in the last 18 seconds after a face-mask penalty and a long completion gave the Chiefs a slim chance at winning the game on a 66-yard field goal attempt. The kick was wide right and way short and the Bears had their second consecutive victory.
The Bears are now 2-3 and with a home game against the winless Lions coming up next week, they have a legitimate shot to go into their bye week 3-3. That’s about two games more than most fans thought they would win through six weeks of the season.
Week 5 Takeaways
1.) Jay Cutler was the hero for the 2nd week in a row – It’s almost a given that Cutler is going to make at least one disastrous play per game, but this week it was early enough for the Bears to overcome it and still get a victory. While Cutler did give the Chiefs seven points with a fumble in his own end zone, he also led the Bears on two touchdown drives in the last three minutes of the game. Despite the fact that Cutler was running for his life all game behind a leaky offensive line and missing his top two wide receivers, he managed to complete 26 passes for 252 yards and two TDs. The overall numbers should have looked better but the Bears offense was hamstrung by penalties and dropped passes for most of the game.
The Bears couldn’t move the ball with any consistency until the last few minutes of the game when not only Cutler but the o-line and back up wide receivers all stepped up and made the plays necessary to win the game. On the Bears last offensive play Cutler picked a dropped snap off the ground, surveyed his surroundings, noticed Matt Forte open and lofted a perfect pass where only Forte could get it for the game winning TD. Cutler’s two 4th quarter TD passes were throws only a few NFL QBs could make and Cutler should get the accolades he deserves for his toughness, ability to evade the rush, and two excellent TD throws on Sunday.
John Rieger-USA TODAY Sports
2.) The Bears back-up WRs stepped up – Marquess Wilson, Josh Bellamy, and Cam Meredith combined for 16 catches, 168 yards, and a TD on Sunday. Wilson caught a 22-yard TD pass to cut the Chiefs lead to 5 and drew a pass interference call on the Bears final drive, Bellamy kept the chains moving with elusiveness and broken tackles after a catching a few screen passes, and Meredith made two catches for 30 yards on the Bears winning TD drive. All three players made crucial plays on Sunday and proved that they belong on the roster regardless of whether Jeffery, White, and Royal are healthy.