Sep 22, 2013; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Chicago Bears linebacker Lance Briggs (55) smiles with linebacker D.J. Williams (58) after making a tackle against the Pittsburgh Steelers during the first quarter at Heinz Field. Mandatory Credit: Jason Bridge-USA TODAY Sports

Chicago Bears Take Advantage Of Pittsburgh Steelers’ Mistakes In 40-23 Victory


In the first half of their game against the Pittsburgh Steelers, the Chicago Bears operated with a sense of urgency that saw running backs Matt Forte and Michael Bush both score a touchdown.

In addition, Chicago Bears’ safety Major Wright returned a Ben Roethlisberger interception for a touchdown.

At half-time, the Bears led the Steelers 24-to-10.

In the third quarter, the sense of urgency that the Bears were operating with transferred to the Pittsburgh Steelers. The Steelers scored ten unanswered points in the third quarter as the Bears’ offense struggled to get anything going with what appeared to be play-calling that was focused on managing the game.

After three quarters of play, Chicago Bears quarterback Jay Cutler had a total of 98 passing yards, averaging 3.8 yards per pass attempt. The running game was working for the Bears in the first half as evident by the touchdowns by Bush and Forte, but when the running game faltered in the third quarter, the Bears did not stray away from it and that is one of the main reasons why the team entered the fourth quarter only leading by a touchdown.

The hits kept coming for the Bears early in the fourth quarter as defensive tackle Henry Melton was carted off the field with an apparent knee injury. The Steelers capped the drive off with a field goal that shrunk the Bears’ lead to four.

On the Bears’ next offensive series, the Bears’ offense finally regained their urgency and control of the game. After Cutler scrambled for a first down on their first third down of the series,  the quarterback then threw a 41-yard pass to wide receiver Brandon Marshall that put the ball on the Steelers’ 22-yard line. After a short pass to tight end Martellus Bennett and a short run by Forte, Cutler connected with wide receiver Earl Bennett for a touchdown. That touchdown was Cutler’s first touchdown pass of the game.

Sep 22, 2013; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Chicago Bears wide receiver Earl Bennett (80) is tackled after a pass reception by Pittsburgh Steelers cornerback William Gay (22) during the first quarter at Heinz Field. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Julius Peppers put the seal on the game with a fumble return for a touchdown, giving the Bears a 40-to-23 lead. That would wind up being the final score of the game.

The difference in this game was turnovers. The Steelers’ had five turnovers against the Bears on Sunday and the Bears scored 23 points as a result. The Bears, after having five turnovers in their first two games, had no turnovers on Sunday. One of the keys for the Bears entering their game against the Steelers was to limit the turnovers. The Bears won the turnover battle and that why it shouldn’t surprise anyone that the Bears won the game.

Perhaps what was most impressive about the Bears’ victory on Sunday was how the team handled the pressure from the Steelers’ defense. The Steelers’ sacked Cutler twice on Sunday night and created consistent pressure on the Bears’ quarterback. However, Cutler managed to overcome the pressure with his ability to move out of the pocket and make plays with both his arm and his feet. Cutler finished the day 20-of-30 passing for a total of 159 passing yards and 1 touchdown.

The 3-and-o Bears remain on the road next week as they travel to Detroit to play the Lions.

 

Tags: Chicago Bears Earl Bennett Major Wright Martellus Bennett Matt Forte Michael Bush Pittsburgh Steelers