Henry Melton kiked off a reasonably good game for the defensive line with a sack right off the bat.
In a change from recent games, the Bears played seven in box on first down even when the Vikings were in running formations.
The Vikings do like to run on first down but, despite early predictions last week, the Vikings looked like they ran a more or less balanced offense early. They eventually figured it out, though. They began running more in the second quarter and doing it more effectively as the Bears flat out refused to bring an eighth man down into the box. Fortunately the Vikings fell far enough behind to where it limited thier opportunities to take advantage.
Quarterback Christian Ponder looks like a good smart quarterback to me. I didn’t see many bad decisions and he was under pressure from a nice effort from the Bears defensive line for much of the game.
I was kind of surprised that the Vikings were working Charles Tillman early before he was injured.
The Vikings made good use of tight end Kyle Rudolph as he repeatedly burned the Bears. I’m thinking they saw what the 49ers did last week. The Bears are going to need to come up with an answer for that.
Its worth noting that the tacking was better today.
First series – fumble Matt Forte. Second series, Cuter trips and J’Marcus Webb almost gets him killed by not adjusting on a line stunt by Everson Griffen. Another nice start for the Bears offense.
I like the way that quarterback Jay Cutler distributed the ball to all of the receivers. In all of the hand-wringing over the Vikings defensive line last week, no one mentioned the miserable defensive backfield.
Cutler had a really good game. He was accurate, fitting the ball into some tight places, and he used his mobility well to bail out of the pocket and avoid pressure.
I won’t say it was a great game for the offensive line but it was, of course, considerably better. There was pressure from the Vikings defensive line but most of the time it wasn’t anything Cutler couldn’t handle. Jonathan Scott looks like an upgrade over Gabe Carimi.
Unbelievable catch by Matt Spaeth for a touchdown in the second quarter.
Nice use of the clock in the 2 minute offense at the end of the half. Despite the fact that the kick was blocked, the team got Robbie Gould a lot closer for a field goal in the last minute of play.
I haven’t said it lately but Brandon Marshall is unbelievable. The catches he makes with guys literally hanging all over him never cease to amaze me.
It wasn’t thier best game but Kenny Albert, Daryl Johnston, Tony Siragusa were still better than the average announcing team you are going to see. I particularly liked it when Johnston pointed out that Lance Louis was pulling and should lead the Vkings to the ball.
Kellen Davis dropped two and Marshall had a drop. Marshall’s drops were costly as one was intercepted and the other should have been a touchdown. But the most damaging drop came in the third quarter when the Vikings Jarius Wright was wide open in the endzone and dropped the ball ultmately costing the Vikings seven badly needed points as they failed to score on the possession.
I agree with Siragusa. A quarterback, in this case Cutler, should never get a taunting penalty.
The game was notable for its blocked field goals as each team managed to get one. Julius Peppers just keeps them coming.
Unlike recent games, the turnovers were damaging today as a fumble and an interception cost the Bears 10 points and and two fumbles and an interception cost the Vikings 14. The Cutler interception really should have been caught be Brandon Marshall.
The Bears showed some intestinal fortitude and came back to play well after a miserable game in San Francisco. They took care of business, beating a team that they were decidedly superior to at home. Perhaps the bigger story will be the Bears players lost to injury as some important men left the field today (Devin Hester, Tillman, Chris Spencer, Lance Lewis and Forte). They’re goiing to be needed as the schedule continues to get tougher.