Bears have solid outing, still manage to lose

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The Bears played as well as they have all season and still somehow managed to lose to the Minnesota Vikings on Sunday at Soldier Field.

The Bears’ biggest loss wasn’t the one in the standings column, but rather the loss of franchise running back Matt Forte. Forte left the game in the third quarter after taking a hit to the knee. The last thing you want to hear when talking about your franchise running back is knee injury. It didn’t appear as though Forte tore anything on the play, though, and he was able to walk to the locker room, so there’s probably no need to panic, yet. John Fox refused to comment on the severity of the injury after the game.

If there is a silver lining in the loss of Forte, it’s that Jeremy Langford came in and proved he is an able backup. Langford did drop a third down pass that would have given the Bears a first down late in the fourth quarter, but other than that he played really well.

The Bears defense did their job for three and a half quarters, and overall they had a strong showing. Pernell McPhee continued to bring pressure on the edge and slumping second-year cornerback Kyle Fuller had a diving pick in the second quarter.

Adrian Peterson rushed for over a hundred yards, but the Bears kept him out of the end zone and that’s difficult to do.

Jay Cutler continues to shine for this Bears’ middling offense. He had yet another solid outing, throwing for 211 yards on 22/33 passing and one touchdown. Most importantly, he didn’t turn the ball over. This loss cannot be blamed on Cutler. He gave the team an opportunity to win. In the end, he just didn’t have enough talent around him to pull out the win.

The return of Alshon Jefferey is clearly having a positive effect on Cutler. Jefferey caught 10 passes for 116 yards and made an acrobatic catch in the back of the end zone to give the Bears their first touchdown of the day. If Alshon was one hundred percent all year, he would be a Pro-Bowl wide receiver this season.

The only problem with the passing game Sunday was Cutler was only getting the ball to Alshon. Tight end Martellus Bennett was the second-leading receiver for the Bears, and he only caught the ball three times for a total of 32 yards. The Bears are going to need more diversity in their receiving corps or their never going to be able accrue more than 211 passing yards a game – especially if Forte is going to miss some time.

The Bears — at 2-5 — are exactly where they belong. The Bears’ brass clearly is trying to rebuild, but the team has enough talent that they will be competitive against even the best teams in the league.

The Bears have a matchup next weekend with a 2-6 San Diego Chargers team that is also struggling to find an identity. The Chargers have lacked consistency and are probably heading in the direction of a rebuild as well. Although, any team with Phillip Rivers leading them will be difficult to beat.