Chicago Bears vs. Indianapolis Colts: Week 1 Live Score, Analysis
Andrew Luck's debut for the Indianapolis Colts was a baptism of fire for the rookie, as he threw three interceptions in the game against an onslaught from Chicago. The Bears kept the pressure on Luck throughout most of the game racking up three sacks a forced fumble on Luck and numerous QB hits in route to a 41-21 victory.
The Chicago Bears offense put forth an effort today that was expected from the Windy City faithful. Jay Cutler threw for 333 yards and two touchdown passes, one each to his new receivers old friend Brandon Marshall, and new friend Alshon Jeffery.
Cutler started the game 1 out of 10 with a pick six, but settled down to then go 14 out of 17 before the end of the first half. He finished the game 21 out of 35 and received contributions from his running backs, Matt Forte with 120 yards combined rushing and receiving also scored a touchdown, while Michael Bush added 12 carries for 42 yards and two touchdown for the Bears.
The game went according to the script Bears fans had envisioned throughout much of the off-season, Cutler had time to throw and made the Colts defense pay hitting Brandon Marshall for nine receptions 119 yards and a touchdown. The Grabowskis also envisioned big plays from the rookie Alshon Jeffery, and they got that too to the tune of three receptions for 80 yards and a score.
Add in the 128 yards rushing from Matt Forte and Michael Bush and the short yardage goal line touchdowns from Bush and Bears fans saw fully what this team is capable of this season.
The Colts put up of a valiant effort early and throughout most of the game, but the defense seemed to lose it's confidence when Dwight Freeney went down with an injury.
Luck did some things well and will only improve when he watches the film of this one and diagnoses what the Bears coverage did to force him into his three INTs.
He became familiar with old reliable Reggie Wayne to the tune of 9 receptions for 135 yards and got his Stanford rookie teammate Colby Fleener involved 6 receptions for 82 yards.
While it wasn't quite the same debut that Cam Newton had as a rookie number one overall draft pick last year, it was an effort that should give the Colts confidence moving forward.
Indianapolis will win more games this year, unfortunately they ran into a much more talented and experienced team. The Bears a team of the present, and the Colts are aiming to be a team of the future.
J.Freeman 4 yd. interception return of Jay Cutler (A.Vinatieri kick is good)
Colts picked off Cutler who was locked onto Forte coming out of the backfield. Freeman read it the entire way and picked it off for a four yard TD.
Bears TD M.Bush 1 yd. run (R.Gould kick is good) Drive: 11 plays, 80 yards on the drive in 4:04
Tie game 7-7. Cutler found his rhythm and the Bears were helped by two pass interference penalties to score the Bears first touchdown.
Bears TD B.Marshall 3 yd. pass from J.Cutler (R.Gould kick is good) Drive: 11 plays, 95 yards in 5:52 14-7.
Cutler rips one to Devin Hester, flips one over the top to Forte who puts it down to the three first and goal. Marshall quick button hook in the endzone, touchdown to Brandon Marshall.
Bears lead 14-7 7:07 in the second quarter.
Bears FG R.Gould 35 yd. Field Goal Drive: 7 plays, 46 yards in 4:08
Chicago caps off one of it's best drives of the game with a field goal. Cutler had his best pass protection of the game and were it not for the offensive pass interference by Hester would have been in the end zone again.
Bears are struggling with the yellow laundry today, penalties killing the Bears.
Colts TD D.Brown 18 yd. run (A.Vinatieri kick is good) Drive: 5 plays, 77 yards in 2:15
Great running on this drive by Donald Brown, set up by great blocking by the Colts offensive line. A nice catch by Reggie Wayne also contributed to Andrew Luck's first touchdown drive.
Bears TD M.Bush 1 yd. run (R.Gould kick is good) Drive: 8 plays, 72 yards in 2:33
Cutler's best drive of the day as the Bears are slinging the football all over the field. After starting 1-10 in the game Cutler is n ow 15-27 for 228 yards with one touchdown and one INT.
Bears TD M.Forte 6 yd. run (R.Gould kick is good) Drive: 4 plays, 55 yards in 2:10
Michael Bush big run contributes to the Bears next touchdown, first of the second half.
Bears FG R.Gould 26 yd. Field Goal Drive: 4 plays, 4 yards in 1:44
After a turnover caused on special teams the Bears are unable to move the ball and kick the field goal.
Bears lead 34-14.
3:00 left in the third quarter.
Colts TD D.Avery 4 yd. pass from A.Luck (A.Vinatieri kick is good) Drive: 12 plays, 80 yards in 4:52
Andrew Luck throws his first career touchdown to Donnie Avery after putting together a solid drive.
Bears TD A.Jeffery 42 yd. pass from J.Cutler (R.Gould kick is good) Drive: 7 plays, 80 yards in 4:12
Bears go play action-pass and Jeffery streaks past the secondary and into the endzone...Cutler hits him in stride about two yards from the back line of the back end goal line. A beautiful throw from Cutler with Jeffery showing off some speed to sprint past the safety and the corner on the play.
Game over: Bears win 41-21
As the Colts attempt get something going on offense the Bears' defensive line pins it's ears and starts getting pressure on Cutler. Two straight pressure leads to two straight incomplete passes. Then Luck is sacked by DT Henry Melton up the middle, great late game pass rush by the Bears.
A big completion for a first down is followed up by another interception by Tim Jennings. Jennings' second INT of the game on Luck was something Lovie Smith had hoped to see more of from the CB. They emphasized to Jennings that he needs to start making more plays on the football, Jennings did that today.
The Bears back on offense leads to Cutler kneeling down on the ball to end the game.
Luck gets one completion and then throws two straight incomplete passes on the drive. The Bears start getting some pressure in Luck's face and he can't find his receivers. Ball batted in the air, then Luck is sacked by Henry Melton with help pressure from Peppers.
Michael Bush gets the carry with big yards but it will come back on the holding call on Kellen Davis. You can see Bush's explosion in spite of the holding call.
Bears playing clock control running the football two times in a row with Michael Bush, then a third time and Bush is swarmed under by a run blitz from the Colts.
The offensive demonstrated today by the Bears shows what they are, what they have become. 41 points in this game represents a new era in Chicago.
Cutler finds Marshall on a back shoulder fade. Forte starts to get the run game going to chew up some clock Bears going conservative here late in the game it's 7:44 left in the fourth quarter.
Third and one Michael Bush bulls ahead for a first down for the Bears clock continues the run. Nine carries for 37 yards and two touchdowns for Bush on the day. Doing precisely what you want from your second string RB.
Play action pass from Cutler has all the time he needs to throw a deep pass to Jeffery who is over the top and past the double coverage. Cutler nails Jeffery about two yards short of the back of the end-zone. That's the type of offensive fire power the Bears can expect going forward,
A big throw and a big catch from the rookie great ball placement from Cutler and Jeffery makes a sweet over the shoulder catch. Bears put up 41 points in the board with the Robbie Gould extra point.
Luck with a great pass to the rookie TE Colby Fleener, Fleener watches the ball sail right through is hands. Definitely a ball he should catch in that situation wide open in the middle of the field. The rookie has struggled to make plays today, he does have a few catches but overall he's missed some critical catches.
Luck with all the time in the world Bears starting to huff and puff on defense the pass rush is not getting to Luck and he's starting to dissect the coverage.
That consistency from the front four in the pass rush is not getting to Luck and it's costing the Bears.
Luck has driven the Colts all the way down to first and goal inside the five. Best drive of the game from the Colts.
Poor coverage from Kelvin Hayden, Luck completes a quick slant touchdown to Donny Avery. Bears' front four pass rush appears very winded at the moment. Andrew Luck's first touchdown pass cuts the Bears lead to 34-21.
Bears will punt after losing a challenge and the ball dribbles into the endzone for a touchback.
First and ten for the Colts, Luck scrambles away from pressure and gets some good yards on the carry. Game now moves to the fourth quarter with the Colts in possession of the football.
Can they make the game interesting or will the Bears put the nail in the coffin by extending their lead?
Luck found a slightly better rhythm in the third quarter, but the Bears have managed to deny the Colts any more points.
Urlacher taking a rest Bears choosing not to force the action. What's interesting is that Urlacher said he would play every single snap in this game. Is this a coaching decision or something more? There is no word other than Urlacher is resting.
Luck gets another good pass off to Reggie Wayne. Wayne has seven receptions for 107 yards in support of the rookie. Has looked like the crafty veteran you would expect him to be in this game. Can Wayne keep this type of production up the rest of the season?
The refs rule it a forced fumble by Corey Wootton with a recovery by Julius Peppers. Wootton making his first big play since his sack of Brett Favre.
Forte struggles to get the run game going and is dropped for a loss of three. Cutler forces it over the middle and is nearly picked off. Good blitz pick up by Forte to clear Cutler's pass attempt.
Marshall with a catch on the quick slant, just comes up short on the first down. Great effort by Marshall going for the first down but he comes up about one foot short.
So is it an interception? Is it a forced fumble that Julius Peppers recovered?
Brian Urlacher still on the sidelines, Bears resting the knee of Urlacher. Donald Brown gashes ahead for a first down run.
Corey Wootton gets a good pass rush on Luck and Julius Peppers comes up with the INT or does he? Refs rule it incomplete and Lovie Smith throws a challenge flag.
Nice to see Corey Woottton getting a good pass rush off the edge. He got a hard up the field around the corner rush and got a good hit on Luck.
Luck put forth a valiant effort but threw a pass that was tipped by the Bears and picked off by Chris Conte. Colts defense steps up and forces the Bears to punt.
Cutler was under pressure and sacked good open field tackling on Devin Hester on a flat route.
Luck to Fleener Bears pass rush led by Shea McClellin is not getting to Luck much now. Colts in the redzone. Tipped pass by Kelvin Hayden on the coverage on Reggie Wayne.
Peppers back into the game after getting some rest. Draw play to Donald Brown insde the 10. Third down and three for the Colts, Luck doesn't like what he says and calls the timeout.
Urlacher and Peppers are on the bench getting the rest of the day off as the Bears extend their lead.
Bears stuff the Colts run game, then give up a pass interference. Great defense by Henry Melton as he gets penetration to stop the run. Paea gets good pressure but the Bears had the PI.
Colts gets a first down pass to a rookie receiver Adams over the top of Tim Jennings.
Big hit by Kelvin Hayden who belts Donnie Avery on the quick pass and the ball is dropped. Third and nine Bears get good enough pressure, Luck slides away from it and gets a nice completion for a first down to Reggie Wayne who settles into the soft spot in the zone.
Kelvin Hayden making it happen for the Bears on special teams, JT Thomas strips the football, Hayden recovers it before he rolls out of bounds.
Bears will be in prime scoring position yet again thanks to a great special teams play.
Hester on an around didn't fool anyone, loss of four. Good discipline by the Colts on defense to stop that Hester around trick play attempt.
Forte on a little swing pass stopped by Vontae Davis, Davis with a good tackle to keep Forte for causing big problems.
Marshall in bracketed coverage just missed by Cutler who has a sliver of a window to throw the football into. Great coverage Cutler forced into the only place he could, Marshall just couldn't come up with the football.
Bears kick a field goal to go ahead 34-14.
Luck comes out firing, incomplete to Fleener with Urlacher on the coverage. He then throws behind his receiver, three and out to start the half.
Hester gets a good punt return for the Bears.
Michael Bush with a real action carry on first down and he gallops ahead with good blocking in front for 20 yards.
Alshon Jeffery on a stop route with a reception, Kellen Davis cleans up two Colts with one block Bears first and 10 at the 12 yard line of the Colts.
Forte gains six with a run to the six, again Forte running hard getting positive yards. Quick draw great blocking by the Bears front five of the offensive line and Forte weaves his way into the end zone for the touchdown.
Another solid drive by the Bears makes it 31-14 as they start to pull away from the young Colts.
A debut I would expect for Luck with 10/17 for 137 yards and one INT by Tim Jennings of the Bears. Just a great play by Jennings, could argue Luck needed a little bit more air under the ball.
Colts got pressure in this game early but once Dwight Freeney went out that completely changed the dynamic of their defense. No pressure on Cutler has led to the Bears coming alive on offense.
Multiple penalties on defense has extended Bears drives.
Running game got going late for the Colts and a decent two minute drive before the half were positive signs for the Colts.
A good learning experience for Luck even if they lose this game.
At the half the Bears have found their rhythm, since starting 1 out of 10, Cutler is 14 of 17 a complete turnaround. Part of what has helped is the Bears are protecting Cutler better than they have in the last three seasons.
Don't think I've seen this level of consistent protection out of the Bears offensive line. Cutler obviously is targeting Marshall in this game, he has seven receptions for 85 yards and a touchdown. Marshall has been all that the Bears have hoped for with his dynamic catches and his physical ability. The physicality of Marshall has led to numerous pass interference calls in the Colts secondary.
Matt Forte has also contributed in a big way, eight carries 58 yards, and two receptions for 32 yards. That's already a typical Forte day with 90 yards from scrimmage in the first half.
Andrew Luck is 4-for-4 four on a two-minute drive before the half getting two completions to Colby Fleener the rookie TE. Reggie Wayne also contributes a reception, Colts are in FG range inside the 20 and Adam Vinatieri misses a field goal by pushing it wide right.
It's now half-time Bears still lead 24-14.
After a Vontae Davis pass interference moves the ball about another three inches closer, Michael Bush goes over the top of the pile for the touchdown.
Cutler with some of the best pass protection he's seen in the last two seasons. Combined with wide receivers who get open or are so physical a CB can only commit a penalty to stop them the Bears are moving the ball down the field.
Bears now extend their lead again 24-14.
The pass protection for Jay Cutler has been great after a shaky start to the game. Cutler with a great throw to Bennett, play is under review.
Question about whether the ball broke the plane of the goal line or if Bennett was down by contact. Very close to call.
Referees determine that Bennett was down by contact at the half yard line.
As of right now the Colts are struggling to get any pressure on Cutler, and as a result they're getting burned time and again. Mike Tice likes what he sees in the passing game and is attacking accordingly. Marshall, Bennett, are making big plays and the Colts have no answer.
Decent kick return by Devin Hester sets up the Bears at the 28 yard line.
Pass protection is good for Cutler, pass complete to Kyle Adams, Bears still going pass heavy.
Cutler with great time, Justin King with inside position on Brandon Marshall, Marshall bats down a pass that could have been picked off.
Cutler gets pressured from the outside steps up and has the ball batted down at the line of scrimmage.
Again great protection for the Bears QB, Cutler completes to a wide open Earl Bennett, defensive holding declined Bears on the move on offense.
At the two minute warning the Bears still lead 17-14, Bears first and 10 at the 40 yard line.
Cutler not as smooth as he could be, but he's getting the job done behind good protection from the offensive line. Bears still going pass heavy.
Reggie Wayne making plays in the pass game.
Donald Brown carving up the Bears with great blocking from his offensive line. Colts blocked well up front, Bears' front four was getting gashed. Matt Toeaina getting blown off the ball Urlacher and Briggs being met up at the second level by scrape blocks.
Uncharacteristic to see the Bears give up big run plays like this, credit to the Colts who cut the lead to 17-14 Chicago. 3:17 left in the first half.
The Colts are struggling to get pressure on Cutler, with Dwight Freeney out of the game with an ankle injury. That's going to hurt the Colts' defense as this game goes on.
Big catch by Reggie Wayne who is shaken up on the play.
Close penalty called on Tim Jennings for pass interference.
Donald Brown gets a good run up the middle well blocked by the Colts offensive line that leads to big yards in the run game.
Great break on the ball by Chris Conte as he drives on the ball and nearly gets the INT. Nice to see that type of coverage from the second year safety.
Cutler is finding his rhythm with a lot of time in the pocket and he has the Bears on the move on offense. Big passes to Alshon Jeffery and Marshall, and then Devin Hester flagged for offensive pass interference. Second and 20.
Marshall quick slant completion from Cutler gets excellent separation. Bears opening up the pass offense third and 11 due to the Hester penalty. Quick draw to Michael Bush for positive yards.
Robbie Gould field goal is up and good right down the middle. Bears now lead 17-7.
Colts still getting pressure but it's not really getting to or rattling Cutler. Cutler and his receivers are starting to dissect the Colts secondary.
The one-handed grab by Forte set up the touchdown, just a great catch by Forte it's what makes him great is being able to catch passes like that. Colts fans can only shake their heads at that one, Bears are starting to find their rhythm on offense.
Big throw by Cutler had nice time and ZOOMS a pass to Hester...an incredible plant and throw by Cutler to Hester. Kyle Adams getting down the field trying to throw a block to get Hester.
Cutler check down to Forte, a one-handed grab by Forte and he gets away for big yards and first and goal for the Bears as Forte gets shoved out of bounds. Cutler to Marshall for the touchdown as Marshall runs a little button hook right in front of Vontae Davis.
Big plays by the Bears offense from Forte, Cutler and Marshall for the touchdown. 10:33 left in the first half Bears lead 14-7.
End of the first quarter game tied at seven.
Forte gets a couple third down and four for the Bears.
Cutler throws complete to Earl Bennett after getting decent time in the pocket. Bennett is hidden behind Marshall and is open immediately
Cutler throws to Marshall for a nice completion Marshall avoids taking a big hit by catching the ball and ducks the safety coming over the top.
What a nice catch and a duck by Marshall. Forte with a carry gets some good yards, it comes back on a holding call by Chris Spencer. Penalties starting to stack up on the Bears early in this game.
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