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Dan Peters Sports Editor
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A Great Home Game Start.................
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Bears Rally, give Marc Trestman
first win, 24-21
by Dan Peters
give Marc Trestman first win, 24-21
Bear's Coach Marc
Trestman Enjoys First Win.
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In what has become typical Chicago Bears football, the Bears found a
way to pull out a season opening win and give new Head Coach Marc
Trestman his first victory as an NFL Head Coach.
The Bears offense stalled out of the gate in Sunday’s home opener, but
the defense continued its relentless pursuit of the football Sunday.
Tillman recorded his first two interceptions of the 2013 season in the
first quarter versus Cincinnati. The first pick came at the Bengals 36,
setting up the Bears first touchdown of the season. Tillman was ready
and waiting and gave the Bears the opportunity to score points off of
turnovers, but the offense stumbled after their first score, and it
looked as if the Bengals would run away with this game.
The third quarter seems to be the time Cutler and his cast of players
started to gel and make plays. The rust was shaken off and they rallied
to score 14 unanswered points to win yet another season opener at
Jay Cutler at Press
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Trestman was low key after his first win
“I’ll start out by really thanking our fans for really amping it up in
the second half, helping our football team. It was a great win for the
City of Chicago and the Chicago Bears. A very good team win for our
football team. We knew it was going to be a 60 minute game I think it
tested us and our backbone, because it didn’t go the way we wanted it
to go certainly, in the first-half. But the guys hung in there, got
together; at half-time pulled themselves together. The team went out
and played every play. We were able to come out on top.”
Turnovers a key factor in today’s victory
The Chicago Bears defense forced three turnovers (two interceptions and
one opponent fumble recovery) in their Week 1 victory over the
The Bears converted those three turnovers into 14 points, including the
game-winning touchdown in the fourth quarter. Along with Tillman,
CB Tim Jennings had two forced fumbles, one of which he recovered for a
“Peanut had two interceptions. Tim [Jennings] had two knockouts. I
think we were plus two overall on turnovers. They just continue to do
what we’ve seen them do throughout training camp, the OTAs. Huge
plays. We were able to convert the first turnover to a touchdown. That
was big. We got off to a fast start. It slowed down dramatically
throughout the first half.” Said Trestman
Last season the Bears led the NFL with 44 takeaways, converting those
turnovers into 145 points.
Jennings knows just how important Tillman is to the Bears D
“Peanut is a pro. He knew he had a task coming into this game. A.J.
Green is a great player, an explosive player, and any time when we know
that Peanut is going to match up against a great player, we feel like
(Peanut) is going to make some plays. That’s just the type of guy he
is. He’s a competitor. He’s smart and a hard-worker. He’s just a pro,
so you definitely just have to take your hats off to him for doing a
Protecting Cutler.. Another key to victory
The “New Look” Chicago Bears offensive line did not allow a sack in the
season opener versus Cincinnati. It was the first time the Bears
didn’t allow a sack since Week 13 versus Seattle in 2012 (December 2).
“The big goal was, let’s see how our defense is doing, let’s see if we
can take care of Jay [Cutler], keep him clean in the first-half. That
was really the number one goal, was just to keep him [Cutler] clean
first-half. We played a very good front. We were able to keep Jay clean
all day. I don’t think he was sacked. I think he ran out of
the pocket a couple of times. He had to stand in there two or three
times and wait on a guy to come open because it was man-to-man, and he
did. We were able to beat man-to-man coverage. We really didn’t see
man-to-man coverage until the second half. The guys came up across the
board and made some very, very tough, contested throws, contested
catches. It started with Martellus’ touchdown catch, which was a
contested play. Also Alshon [Jeffery] and Brandon [Marshall] making the
plays when we were able to find man-to-man coverage, which wasn’t
often.” Said Trestman
Cutler was 21-of-33 (63.6 percent) passing for 242 yards, two
touchdowns and one interception for a 93.2 passer rating. In the second
half, Cutler was 11-of-14 passing (78.6 percent) for 172 yards, one
touchdown and one interception for a 111.9 passer rating,
leading the Bears to touchdown drives of 80 and 81 yards in the
“We started clicking a little bit. We weren’t really happy early on.
Our tempo was a little off kilter. We came into halftime, down 14-10.
The defense did a great job. It was just a matter of us keep calling
plays, be confident in what we were doing. The offensive line, I
thought, played a great game all four quarters. We’ve just got to keep
going with that. There’s plenty for us to look at on film and make some
changes. We were far from a perfect offense today. We didn’t have to
be, we just had to be good enough to win a four-quarter game. That’s
what we did.” Said Cutler.
The 78.6 second-half completion percentage was the seventh-highest of
Cutler’s Bears career.
Marshall.. Marshall… Marshall
Bears WR Brandon Marshall had eight receptions for 104 yards and a
touchdown in the 2013 season opener versus Cincinnati. The second half
was the key. “The second half, we were able to capitalize off our
opportunities. It was a great win. It felt like a playoff game early.
To start the season off against a Cincinnati Bengals team that’s really
good, fast and physical, it was a great challenge for us. We knew it
was going to be four quarters. Like coach Trestman says, “58 minutes,
plus two,” and that’s exactly what it was. It was a big win for us.
Total team win. Coach [Trestman] did a great job of getting us
prepared. We did some things early, adjusted off of it and it worked.”
It was Marshall’s eighth 100-yard receiving game as a member of the
Bears and the 27th of his NFL career. Marshall’s eight 100-yard
receiving games are already eighth most in franchise history, breaking
a tie with Marty Booker and Willie Gault. Harlon Hill is the franchise
leader with 19 such contests, followed by Johnny Morris (15), Mike
Ditka (14), Curtis Conway (12) and Dick Gordon, Jeff Graham and Ken
Kavanaugh (nine each).
The Bears are 5-3 when Marshall has over 100-yards receiving.
Rookies make an impressive debut
Bears rookies Kyle Long (first round draft pick) and Jordan Mills
(fifth round draft pick) started along the offensive line at right
guard and right tackle respectively versus Cincinnati.
“Well, we got out of there with a win. We’re just happy that we’re all
healthy. It’s just another case of leaning on our (veteran players) and
on our big playmakers. The defense did a great job, getting all of
those takeaways. It’s just another example of playing a sixty-minute
ball game; one half doesn’t dictate the final score. Credit the leaders
in this room for keeping us focused, keeping us locked in, and credit
the cardio. We have great cardio; we get a lot of reps in practice, so
late in the game, we are fresh.” Said Long.
The last time Bears had two rookies start along the offensive line on
opening day was 1983 when Jim Covert started at left tackle and Rob
Fada started at left guard. Long is the first Bears rookie to start the
season opener at right guard in the Super Bowl era. Mills is the first
Bears rookie to start at right tackle on opening day since Gabe Carimi
Before Sunday, the last time the Bears had multiple rookies start on
opening day was 1998 (FS Tony Parrish and TE Alonzo Mayes).
Gould sets new Bears
Robbie Gould looked to be in mid-season form Sunday, drilling a
franchise-record 58-yard field goal in the second quarter against
Cincinnati. It would have been good from 63 yards. The previous record
was a 57-yard field goal by Gould on December 11, 2011 at Denver. The
previous long at Soldier Field was a 55-yard fi eld goal by Kevin
Butler versus Minnesota on October 25, 1993.
Gould has hit 11-straight fi eld goals from 50-yards or longer tying
the NFL record set by Tony Zendejas from 1988-93 (also tied by
Minnesota kicker Blair Walsh on Sunday).
The Bears will face yet another test next week when the Minnesota
Vikings come to Soldier Field.. Stopping Adrian Peterson.
NFL News of Game