Rapid Reaction: Bears 41, Colts 21
September, 9, 2012
By Michael C. Wright |
Bears unleashed the explosive offense they discussed all offseason in
demolishing the Indianapolis
Colts by 41-21 in Mike Tice’s first official game as the club’s new
While the unit looked shaky early on, it’s not out of the
question to say that with some seasoning, the Bears could develop into arguably
the most dangerous offense in the NFC North with all the weapons the team has
acquired to put around quarterback Jay Cutler.
Cutler shook off a 1-for-10 start to throw for 333 yards and a pair of
touchdowns, including a 42-yard bomb to rookie Alshon
Jeffery in the fourth quarter to put the exclamation point on an explosive
Bears performance that also featured running backs Matt Forte and Michael Bush
combining for 122 yards and three more TDs.
Here’s a closer look:
What it means: The Bears needed to start off with a
victory because they face the Green Bay
Packers Thursday night. Minnesota and Detroit started off their seasons with
victories, so it was important for the Bears to do the same to keep pace in a
division that will be one of the league’s most competitive in 2012.
Shaky start: Cutler dramatically improved as the first
half progressed, but the Bears know he can’t get off to such a slow start again
Thursday night. Cutler completed only one of his first 10 passes, and threw an
interception returned for a touchdown by Jerrell
Freeman that gave the Colts an early advantage at the 11:23 mark of the
first quarter. Cutler’s passer rating after 13 attempts was 0, and he finished
the first quarter with a passer rating of 4.9 after completing 3 of 10 for 21
yards. Once Cutler stopped forcing passes to Marshall and the offensive line
settled in, the quarterback finished the first half completing 15 of 27 for 228
yards and a touchdown and a passer rating of 80.5.
Luck makes history: Well, not really, but sort of. Luck starting
against Chicago marked just the second time the Bears faced a starting
quarterback making his NFL debut. The last time it happened, the Bears matched
up against Philadelphia
Eagles quarterback Scott Tinsley, who was playing his first NFL game during
the 1987 strike season. Chicago smashed the Eagles 35-3 in that outing in front
of 4,074 fans as Tinsley completed 7-of-22 passes for 65 yards. The Bears sacked
Tinsley’s backup, Guido Merkins, 10 times. Obviously, Luck fared a little better
by hitting on 23 of 45 for 309 yards and a TD.
milestone: Cutler’s 3-yard touchdown pass to Brandon
Marshall with 5:52 remaining in the second quarter moved the quarterback
into sole possession of fourth place in franchise history in career TD passes.
Cutler came into the game tied with Ed Brown and Erik Kramer for
fourth with 63 TD tosses. Cutler finished the game with 333 yards and two
touchdown passes. But Cutler still has plenty of work to do to catch franchise
leader Sid Luckman (137 career TD passes).
Forte moves past
Sayers: Forte entered the matchup with the Colts needing 46 yards from
scrimmage to move past Hall of Fame running back Gale Sayers for fourth-most
yards from scrimmage in franchise history. Forte passed Sayers in the first
quarter when he gained 47 of Chicago’s 61 yards on two plays during one of the
club’s two first-quarter scoring drives. Forte entered the game with 6,218 yards
from scrimmage in 60 outings. Sayers had gained 6,263 yards from scrimmage in 68
games. Forte also became just the third player in Bears history to gain 4,000
career rushing yards and 2,000 receiving. Forte come into the game with 1,985
yards receiving and caught two passes for 32 yards in the first half to move
into select company with Walter Payton and Neal Anderson,
who rushed for 6,166 yards and gained 2,763 yards receiving during his career.
What’s next: The Bears face a short turnaround going
into Thursday night’s matchup on the road against the Packers. So they’ll return
to the practice field to work on Monday and Tuesday before using Wednesday as a
Jay Cutler leads rout as Bears spoil Andrew Luck's NFL debut
CHICAGO -- Jay Cutler and Brandon Marshall weren't about to let Andrew Luck upstage them in their first
game back together.
Cutler threw for 333 yards and two touchdowns, Marshall added 119 yards
receiving with a TD, and the Chicago Bears
spoiled Luck's debut, beating the 41-21 Sunday in the season opener.
Andrew Luck vs. Peyton Manning
Colts quarterback Andrew Luck posted similar statistics in his NFL debut to
Peyton Manning, the legend he is trying to replace.
| ||Manning ||Luck |
|Passing yards ||302 ||309 |
|Passing TDs ||1 ||1 |
|Interceptions ||3 ||3 |
|Result ||Loss ||Loss |
|-- ESPN Stats & |
Matt Forte ran for 80 yards and a touchdown
to go with 40 yards receiving. Newcomer Michael Bush added two TD runs, and the
defense did its part, holding Luck in check.
He was 23 of 45 for 309 yards with a 4-yard TD pass to Donnie Avery early in the fourth. But Luck
also got picked off three times -- twice by Tim Jennings -- in an up-and-down start for
a rookie with huge shoes to fill. All he has to do is prove the Colts were right
to take him with the No. 1 pick in the draft and part with Peyton Manning after he missed last season
with a neck injury.
Reggie Wayne, one of Manning's old targets,
caught nine passes for 135 yards. But it was a familiar result for a team with
new management and a new coach in Chuck Pagano after winning just two games.
Then again, it was hardly a surprise.
The Bears are aiming high, and they wound up with their highest point
total since they scored 48 in a win over Detroit on Oct. 4, 2009.
With their Pro Bowl running back and strong-armed quarterback leading the
way, they racked up 428 yards -- 287 while building a 10-point halftime lead --
in their first game with Mike Tice as coordinator.
Forte's 6-yard run early in the third quarter and Robbie Gould's field goal after LaVon Brazill fumbled away the ensuing
kickoff made it 34-14.
Cutler shook off a rough start and completed 21 of 35 passes. He got
sacked by Robert Mathis for a 12-yard loss on the
game's first play from scrimmage, a familiar site for the Bears, and had an
interception returned 3 yards for a touchdown by Jerrell Freeman on the second possession.
But Chicago caught a big break when the Colts' Dwight Freeney sprained an ankle in the
The Bears are eyeing a playoff run after injuries wrecked a promising
season a year ago, sending them to an 8-8 finish. New general manager Phil Emery
revamped the roster and brought in a go-to receiver, reuniting Cutler with his
old friend from Denver in Marshall in that blockbuster trade with Miami.
One big concern is Brian Urlacher's left knee after he
initially injured it in the finale last season and had it scoped last month. The
eight-time Pro Bowl linebacker practiced this week for the first time since July
31 and got pulled from this game after things got out of hand.Pro Bowl cornerback Charles Tillman limped off the field and
appeared to be favoring his right leg after Indianapolis punted on its first
possession. He came back for the next defensive series but sat out the rest of
The Colts were missing receiver Austin Collie, who was held out because of
a concussion, and their defense took a hit when Freeney rolled his ankle on a
low block early in the game.
That happened on the Bears' first scoring drive, which wiped out a 7-0
deficit and quieted the groans that were rumbling through Soldier Field.
That sack on Cutler was an all-too-familiar sight, and Freeman's
touchdown return on a short swing pass intended for Forte to start the second
possession wasn't what the Bears had in mind.
They quickly erased that deficit, with a 32-yard run around the left end
by Forte and a 15-yard spin through the middle leading to Bush's 1-yard scoring
run. And they grabbed a 14-7 lead early in the second quarter on Cutler's 3-yard
pass to Marshall. That came after a neat one-handed grab by Forte, who
leapfrogged a defender while turning a short pass into a 31-yard gain.
A deep pass by Luck intended for Donnie Avery got picked off by a leaping
Tim Jennings. That led to a field goal by Gould, making it a 10-point game,
before an 18-yard run by Donald Brown late in the half pulled
Indianapolis within 17-14.
Bush's scoring run from the 1 in the closing minute of the half made it
24-14 and it stayed that way when the Colts' Adam Vinatieri missed a 37-yard field goal
in the final seconds.
Copyright by STATS LLC and The
Last edited by Riczaj01; 09-09-2012 at 05:12 PM.
Ya' gotta hand it to Culter and the receivers. He came back from a 1-10 to go 20-25 for the rest of the game. Decent blocking; 122 yards rushing, 333 passing 5 tds. Good play calling. All pretty good for a first outing.
I'm getting to that age where a lifetime warranty just doesn't mean as much to me anymore as an afternoon nap. Honey Badger Don't Care. Honey Badger Don't Give a Shit.
I expected the team to look rough in this first game. They started out that way, but surprised me with how good they played. I do expect this team to improve each game for the next 3 or 4 games.
Green Bay looks pretty rough today (so far). Their defense looks very ordinary at best. We need a win Thursday. We'd start out 2-0 with a win over the reigning NFC-N champs. That would be an ideal beginning to our 2012 season.
Last edited by JustAnotherBearsFan99; 09-09-2012 at 05:49 PM.
Thanks For The Memories
I want a win Thursday night against the Packers. There is no excuse why the Bears can't pull it off so long as the offensive line plays half way decently. We can spread out the Packers' secondary all over the place with our receivers and with Cutler's cannon for an arm. I fully expect that we'll run better too.
I hope that Peanut is back for the game. We're going to need him, though Kelvin Hayden did a fine job filling in for him.
Sunday, the Bears faced a Colts team with a rookie QB playing his first regular season game, playing a "hybrid" (sometimes 4-3 others 3-4) defense just installed this off season. The Bears faced a team that is in transition on both offense and defense. The good thing is that the Bears shook of their jitters and went on to take care of business. This was a game that the Bears were heavily favored to win. I am not satisfied that this one game is a strong indicator of how the Bears will perform in every game the rest of the season. Thursday will be the real test.
All of that being said, I'm thrilled with the offensive performance of the Bears. I can't remember the last time I saw the Bears put up this many points.
I guess I'm not quite ready to drink the kool-aid yet.
"Professional Armchair Quarterback" and other oxymora.....
High Fives / Like - 1 BEAR DOWN!, 0 Dislikes
My rapid reax was that our defense looked pretty good without any LB play at all really. Ok, they were in on a few tackles and help force a sack, but otherwise....absent.
The defense has been so very LB dependent for years it seemed strange, but if we get something out of them a bit more substantial, we should be in very good shape.
Oline settled down nicely after the craptacular first drive. Yes, I realize we were keeping folks in to help, but that is fine w/ me. Actually, it's what we all expect and as long as Cutler doesn't get too dirty, all is well. He wasn't hit too often yesterday, so I'm just a little proud.
Oh, and regardless of what anyone thinks, that Colts team is better than most have given credit. They won't win bunches of games, but they will be in them. I'd say they win 6 games and play several others fairly close.
Winston Churchill: "Since light travels faster than sound, some people appear bright until you hear them speak."
"If you're not a liberal at twenty you have no heart, if you're not a conservative at forty you have no brain."
What I don't liked: Cutty forced too many passes to Marshall. I know he trusts him and he is good, but many times there was no chance for Marshall to catch the ball. Cutty has to see this
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Cutler in general was forcing a lot of passes. He could have easily had 3 int's in this game. But gotta take the good w/the bad and in this case the bad wasn't game changing and they now have film on what he shouldn't do.
As a Bears fan you may not know this but you can do things like that in the NFL if you have a real #1 WR. And for once we do have one if not more on this team.
Originally Posted by GermansbombedPH