Morning Box Score: Bears Beat Cowboys
By Benjy Lipsman in News on Sep 20, 2010 3:00PM
After watching the Bears' first possession in Sunday's game, it looked like they were going to get killed... and quarterback Jay Cutler might literally lose his life (or least a few limbs) the way the Dallas defense kept drilling him into the turf. But Mike Martz adjusted his offensive schemes and the Bears ended up beating the Cowboys 27-20 in Dallas to open the season 2-0.
The Bears initiated the scoring, taking a 3-0 lead after D.J. Moore intercepted a tipped ball on Dallas' first possession, deep in Dallas territory. Dallas answered with a TD and it looked like the Bears were on their way to defeat as they had managed only eight yards of offense in their first three turns with the ball. But following the Cowboys' score, Martz's new game plan was implemented. Utilizing quicker throws bahind a rejiggered line, the Bears found their groove and found the end zone within two plays -- a 39 yard catch by tight end Greg Olsen. Dallas answered to regain the lead at 14-10, but Cutler marched the Bears right back down for seven more points, highlighted by a 59-yard bomb to Johnny Knox and a nifty corner end zone grab by Devin Hester for a TD that suggests he might finally be turning into a real wide receiver. A second Moore INT set up another Robbie Gould field goal shortly before halftime, and the Bears took a 20-14 lead into the locker room.
The Cowboys cut the lead to three with a third quarter field goal, but Dallas' new kicker David Buehler shanked a 44-yard attempt that would have tied the game. On their ensuing possession the Bears put the game away. Cutler needed just four plays before he found Matt Forte on a three yard pass to increase the lead to 27-17. While Dallas added another field goal, they still couldn't catch the Bears.
Cutler finished the day throwing for 277 yards and completed 21 or 29 passes. He connected for three TD passes and didn't toss a single interception, finishing the day with a 136.7 QB rating. In spite of the heavy pressure, Cutler suffered just one sack, although he was hit quite a bit. His favorite targets included Knox, who caught four balls for 86 yards and Hester, who totaled 77 yards on four catches. But what about week one's leading receiver, Devin Aromashodu? He spent the game mostly on the bench. While the shift in game plan helped protect the QB, the offensive live remains the glaring weakness on this squad. Defensively, the Bears seemed to have fallen into their bend-but-don't-break style, where they gave up a lot of yards yet made key plays to keep the opponent in check.
Sporting a 2-0 record, Bears fans want to know whether or not our team is for real. The tests will keep coming for this team. While they came out of Dallas with a big win against a team many thought to be among the NFC's best, they face an even bigger test in week three: the Green Bay Packers next Monday night.