Detroit pulled out a big home win against the Bears on Monday night, downing Chicago 24-13 at Ford Field. The Bears were plagued with too many penalties, poor pass protection and a defense that gave up too many big plays.
Jay Cutler finished the game with 249 yards, 1 TD, 3 sacks and 0 INT. His numbers hardly tell the story of his play, as Cutler kept several plays alive by scrambling and finding a receiver as the Lions rushed him. His clutch passes to Devin Hester and Kellen Davis helped the Bears get their only TD of the game.
Penalties played a huge role in the game. The Bears were flagged 14 times for a total of 104 yards, while the Lions had 12 penalties for 94 yards. Much of that had to do with the loud crowd in Detroit.
With Detroit's crowd riled up by their baseball team in the postseason and the fact that they actually have a winning football team, the Bears were bothered by the crowd noise at Ford Field. J'Marcus Webb, Frank Omiyale and Kellen Davis were all guilty of multiple false start penalties. The Bears had to burn two timeouts in the first quarter, and Lovie Smith lost the final one on an ill-advised challenge. The Lions had plenty of penalties of their own, as they were called on roughing Jay Cutler and facemasking.
The defense has still failed to find a rhythm. They were worried about Calvin Johnson coming into the game, but it was Jahvid Best who turned out the be the difference maker. Johnson had a 73-yard TD in the second quarter, but that was beat by Best's 88-yard touchdown run. He made it to the end zone untouched, scoring the longest Lions' TD since 1950.
The Bears have to figure out what's wrong on both offense and defense soon, or the playoffs will slip out of their hands like too many of Cutler's passes. They will play the Vikings on Sunday night on NBC. Will they even their record, or will they get swept in their first go-around in the NFC North?