Chicago Bears

Bears vs. 49ers: Chicago Suffers Complete Collapse in Monday Night Loss

SAN FRANCISCO, CA - NOVEMBER 19:  Jason Campbell #2 of the Chicago Bears fumbles the ball as he is sacked by Ahmad Brooks #55 of the San Francisco 49ers in the third quarter of the game at Candlestick Park on November 19, 2012 in San Francisco, California.  (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
Ezra Shaw/Getty Images
Andrew GardaFeatured ColumnistNovember 20, 2012

The Bears did not come to play in San Francisco.

That's the only real explanation for the debacle Monday night.

We expected some issues with the offense and knew that Jason Campbell might struggle—not as much as he did, granted, but we knew he wasn't Jay Cutler.

It's the collapse of the defense which is surprising.

Normally, it's the Bears defense which sets the tone for a game, which imposes its will on the opposition. Not this time. This time, it was the Niners which did the will-imposing. They started right from the beginning and never let up.

The Bears defense was on its heels quickly, as backup San Francisco quarterback Colin Kaepernick carved them up to the tune of 243 yards and a pair of touchdowns. Frank Gore and Kendall Hunter had a good day on the ground as well.

For once, the defense had no miraculous turnovers, no pressure, barely two sacks and no answers.

It made the struggles the offense ran into even more pronounced.

Jason Campbell looked completely shaken the entire night, and he barely glanced in Brandon Marshall's direction. To make matters worse, Alshon Jeffery returned to action only to leave again with a knee injury.

The offensive line, which had played well recently, fell apart. Gabe Carimi was especially overmatched by the 49ers defensive line, which went through him as if he was tissue paper.

The poor offensive line play made it impossible to get the ground game going effectively as well, though they stayed with it longer that they normally do. Once again, though, there seemed to be little creativity to the run plays, which were almost always in traditional run situations.

Overall, there is no phase of the game where the Bears played well—not offense, where they have struggled at times; not defense which is normally a strength and not coaching.

It was a bad performance at one of the worst times, and the Bears have a short week to make sure the momentum doesn't trip them up as they head into an intense portion of the season.

 

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