After Rick Reilly blasted QB Jay Cutler for never smiling or showing joy, I am sure he has a big smile on his face now. Soldier field will play home to the NFC Championship next week vs the Green Bay Packers.
The Bears defeated the Seahawks 35 to 24 at Soldier Field today. The Seahawks were coming off a huge victory over the defending super bowl champion Saints but, it didn’t help their case at all. Cutler’s 1st playoff start was a very…very successful one. His 1st pass was a 58 yard pass to Greg Olsen for a touchdown.
In his 1st post-season game Jay Cutler left no doubts with fans that he ready for the playoffs. Cutler was 15 for 27 for 274 yards adding 2 touchdowns in the air, and 2 on the ground. Cutler had 46 rushing yards as well.
In a game where the elements were present, Cutler played nearly flawless. He was able to get rid of the ball on time consistently, find the open wide receivers, and not turn the ball over.
Matt Forte (80 yards), Chester Taylor (44 yards), and Cutler’s (46 yards) rushing performance gave the Bears 180+ yards on the ground. Offensive production wasn’t an area of concern through out the game as the Bears moved the ball at will for the entire game.
The 2nd meeting of the season between these two teams proved to be different from the first. Earlier in the season the Seahawks defeated the Bears 23-20 at Soldier field. That was a game in which Mike Williams would torch the Bears secondary for 10 catches for 123 yards. Charles Tillman would effectively shut him down the entire game.
Williams’ only catches that were meaningful in the game came in the 4th quarter, one touchdown coming off a dropped interception by Tillman. Tillman was visibly upset at the dropped inteception. He also dropped an interception earlier in the game as well, after wards doing 10 push-ups on the field to convey he was sorry to coaches, fans, and himself.
The only notable injuries include Chris Harris leaving the game at the start of the 2nd half with a hip injury. The extent of his injury isn’t known at this point but D.J. Moore filled in for him.
The defense played sound football for 3 quarters but allowed a 4th quarter surge by the Seahawks. Despite allowing 21 points in the 4th quarter, the defense shut Seattle down for 75% of the game. This has been the story of the Bears defense all season long. Jump up on the other team and then allow a slight comeback. A dominating performance looks to be a lot more close with the score 35-24.
Soldier field will be the place to be next week. Chicago will host the Green Bay Packers in the NFC Championship. It will be only the 2nd time the Bears have faced the Packers in the post-season in team history. The teams split the series 1-1 this season, the winner of this game will get the better of the other for the season and advance to the Super bowl.
Now pace yourself for a long week of Bears/Packers coverage from ESPN. It’s going to be forced upon us like Ben Roethlisberger…well…never mind we shouldn’t joke about that.