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Bears Beat Rams 42-27 on MNF

By Benjy Lipsman in News on Dec 12, 2006 2:08PM

All eyes were upon Rex Grossman as Monday night's game began, wondering which Rex would show up in St. Louis. Would we get the budding star we saw in September, or the QB who alone had more turnovers than 12 teams? And how long would he last before Lovie Smith switched to Brian Griese?

As it turned out, we never did see Griese on the field. Rex actually played pretty well for the first time in a while, completing 13 of 23 passes for 200 yards and 2 TDs -- and most importantly, no turnovers. Good for a 114.4 QB rating ... or 113.1 points better than last week. The running game was on track, too -- racking up 172 yards on 34 carries. The Bears ended up beating the Rams 42-27.

The star of the game, however, was clearly Devin Hester. The rookie returned two kickoffs for touchdowns in the game. He took the first one back 94 yards in the second quarter to counter the Rams first TD. He returned another to close the Bears scoring in the 4th quarter, taking that one back 96 yards.

With these two return TDs, Hester set a new NFL record for return TDs in a season with six. In addition to Monday's two kickoff returns, he also returned one other kickoff, two punts and a missed field goal for touchdown. Could he possibly win Rookie of the Year as a special teams player?

With the win, the Bears have locked up a first round playoff bye. Even were they to lose the rest of their games -- and their three remaining opponents are a combined 9-30 -- only the Saints could pass them in the standings. But since two teams get first round byes... More likely, they'll win out and finish 14-2.

Unrelated to last night's game, the Bears did receive some bad news yesterday. Pro Bowl defensive tackle Tommy Harris, who was inactive because of a hamstring injury, will be out of the remainder of the year. He will have surgery today -- the worst case scenario prognosis. While his loss will no doubt weaken the defense, hopefully Alfonso Boone and Ian Scott can carry the load through the playoffs.

Photos via REUTERS/Tim Parker and AP Photo/Tom Gannam