Chicago Bears would deny the Cardinals’ upset bid without scoring a touchdown on offense
This one was supposed to be easy for the Chicago Bears. I sat back on my couch expecting the outcome to be decided at halftime. It should have been over by the half. I could have gone to bed at a reasonable hour before school the next day. The hapless Arizona Cardinals, then 1-4 at the time, were hosting the undefeated Bears on Monday Night Football in October of 2006.
Rex Grossman had other plans.
The Bears’ offense was a mess in the desert. But most of the problems were with Grossman. He finished with a QBR of 4.0. Four interceptions and two fumbles later, Bears fans wished the team’s punt total was more than 5 for the game. By halftime, the score was 20-0.
At the break, I was ready for bed. Watching the ever-pale and pasty human version of a broken jugs machine that was Grossman under center could add 10 hours to your day.
The second half was a beauty, however, as the Bears defense and special teams would come to the rescue. 23-3 was the score before the Bears would start to mount their comeback. It would take two fumble recoveries brought back for six (one by Mike Brown and one by Charles Tillman) before a Devin Hester punt return put the Chicago Bears over the Cardinals 24-23. A Neil Rackers missed field goal (his second of the night) in the last minute would seal the victory for the Chicago Bears.
The adrenaline was jolting, I was on five cups of coffee worth of cortisol as the game finished. Sleep would be put off for school the next day.
Dennis Green was not happy the Chicago Bears won
Mike Tirico called the game for ESPN and described it as “thievery.” Cardinals head coach Dennis Green, waddling to the post-game presser, compared it to a prisoner’s escape in one of the NFL’s greatest tirades.
“The Bears are what we thought they were. They’re what we thought they were. We played them in preseason,” Green said, gums and lips flailing over the screen as his phlegm smacked the microphone with a force only to be eclipsed by his palms roughly tossing it to his right.
“I mean, who the hell takes the third game of the preseason like it’s bullshit? Bullshit! We played them in the third game, everybody played three quarters,” Green continued to bitch to a silent press core. “The Bears are who we thought they were. That’s why we took the damn field. Now if you want to crown them, then crown their ass. But they are who we thought they were and we let ’em off the hook.”
The epic lives on in the hearts of Bears fans
There are still more than two months before the Chicago Bears have a chance to attempt an epic comeback this season. The Bears should have plenty of opportunities to do so this season. Fortunately, you can relive the Bears’ former glory, as I’ll want to do plenty this season. Here’s a clip of the 2006 Bears comeback versus the Cardinals.
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