Bears Report Card: Bears vs Cardinals 12/23/12

Bears beat Arizona 28-13, keep playoff hopes alive

Bears 28  Cardinals 13

The Bears went into Arizona to face a offensively struggling Cardinals team. Jay Cutler wasn't great, but the defense showed up with 3 takeaways. The Bears move to 9-6 on the year and need to beat Detroit next week on the road to slip into the playoffs as a Wild Card team. Here's how the team rated the week.

Quarterback: C-

Jay Cutler was inaccurate and had a rough start to the game. Cutler, however, was good enough for the Bears to win. Cutler was 12/26 for 146 yards and 1 TD. Cutler's rating for the day was 76.8. Cutler struggled with his control and accuracy. He was only able to hook up with Brandon Marshall 6 out 14 times. Cutler will need to improve for the Bears to beat the Lions next week.

Running backs: A-

It was a surprise to me that the Bears did not commit early to run game due to the Cardinals good pass defense. Matt Forte had a good game while he was healthy. Forte rushed 12 times for 88 yards and 1 TD. His longest run was for 36 yards. Forte, however, exited the game with a foot/ankle injury. Forte left the stadium in a walking boot. Kahlil Bell, who was signed for the 3rd time this year, rushed 13 times for 32 yards. Armando Allen chipped in with 5 rushes for 24 yards.

Receivers: B

Brandon Marshall was targeted 14 times and had 6 completions. Marshall did not have his typical 100 yard game, but finished with 68 yards and 1 TD. Marshall faced a tough corner in Patrick Peterson, but won that battle for the day. Alshon Jeffery was targeted 4 times and only caught one pass for 35 yards. Earl Bennett had 1 catch for 16 yards in his return. Kellen  Davis was 2/2 for 19 yards.

Offensive Line: A-

Jay Cutler was given plenty of time in the pocket. He was only sacked one time, which was more on Jay holding the ball too long then the line. The run game was effective and the offensive line had one of its better games. Gabe Carimi was back at right tackle and wasn't bad. The limited its bad penalty calls as well.

Defensive Line: A

The Bears were able to show the Cardinals different looks defensively. Ryan Lindley and Brian Hoyer faced pressure that started with the front four. Julius Peppers had 3 sacks, 1 pass deflection, and forced fumble in the game. Israel Idonije contributed with one sack. Corey Wootton had 2 tackles and Amobi Okoye had 1 tackle. The front four provided the pressure that led to turnovers for the Bears.

Linebackers: A

The Bears limited the Cardinals running game to 1.5 yards per carry. Nick Roach had 8 solo tackles and was effective against the run. Lance Briggs had a very good game with 6 total tackles and a pass deflection. Geno Hayes filled in with 2 tackles.

Secondary: A

Larry Fitzgerald had a big game with 12 catches for 111 yards and got the better of Charles Tillman in that matchup. Tillman did have 8 tackles, 1 pass deflection, and a INT for a TD making up for it. Tim Jennings returned from his shoulder injury and had 4 tackles. Kelvin Hayden had 3 tackles, 2 pass deflections, and a INT in the 4th quarter for 39 yards.  Major Wright had 3 tackles and a pass deflection. Chris Conte left the game early with a hamstring injury. Zachary Bowman recovered a fumble from Beanie Wells and turned it into a TD for the first 6 pts of the game.

Special Teams: A-

Olindo Mare was 4/4 in XP's, but he had a FG blocked that was taken back for 6 pts. Adam Podlesh had 9 punts and 3 were inside the 20. Podlesh's longest on the day was 64 yards and established good field position for the Bears defense. Devin Hester had a big kick return for 40 yards. DJ Moore caused a fumble by letting the ball hit of him on a punt return. Moore is struggling greatly in his last two games.




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