Bears Maul Browns
The day after Halloween proved to be as frightening as the actual day for the Browns as they lost to the Bears, 30-6 at Soldier Field to drop their record to 1-7 heading to the bye week.
The Browns have been the tonic for what ails struggling teams. Last week, the Bears secondary was destroyed by Carson Palmer and the Bengals. This week, the Browns had 13 yards in the first half passing and finished with just 74.
Meanwhile, the Bears had 369 total yards and took advantage of five Browns turnovers that resulted in 20 points on the way to the win.
Whenever the Browns seemed to get it going, they gave it back to the Bears.
Eric Mangini did pull Derek Anderson with three minutes to play after another abysmal performance by Anderson, who put up a 10.5 QB rating. He threw two interceptions, one was returned for a touchdown.
The defense kept the game somewhat close early as they limited the Bears to three field goals after the Bears started in good field position after two Browns’ turnovers.
The Bears scored first as Robbie Gould kicked a 37-yard field goal with 2:20 left in the first quarter. Jay Cutler hit Matt Forte for a 28-yard gain to the Browns’ 35, but it appeared the Browns were to get it back as it appeared Eric Barton sacked Cutler and a forced fumble resulted in a 25-yard loss. However, the Bears challenged the call and it was ruled an incomplete pass, saving the 25 yards. Cutler then scrambled and picked up 19 yards to the 15.
Right after the kickoff after the Bears’ field goal, Derek Anderson threw an interception to Danny Manning, who returned the ball to the Browns’ 13.
However, the Browns defense stiffened and forced the Bears to add a 29-yard field goal by Gould to make it 6-0 with 1:13 left in the first quarter.
Again, the Browns turned it over as Jamal Lewis fumbled in Browns’ territory and the Bears took advantage to increase their lead to 9-0 with 8:43 left in the first half on Gould’s third field goal, this one from 32 yards. Forte had a 12-yard run to the nine, but Kamerion Wimbley sacked Cutler on third down to force the field goal.
On the next series, the Bears took advantage of a Browns penalty and increased their lead to 16-0 with 1:56 left in the first half as Forte went over from the one. The Browns had the Bears stopped earlier on the drive, but Wimbley hit Cutler helmet-to-helmet to give the Bears a first down on third down. After the penalty, Cutler hit Devin Hester on successive passes to the Browns’ 26. A pass to Greg Olsen moved the ball to the 14. Forte picked up six for the first down to take the one, before taking it in on the next play.
The Browns made it 16-6 with 10:33 to play in the third quarter as Anderson was able to sneak over from the one. Phil Dawson, who made his first appearance in six weeks, had the PAT blocked. The Bears received the second half kickoff and were forced to punt but Brad Maynard had just a 12-yard punt and the Browns started at the Bears’ 30. Jamal Lewis ripped off 13- and 10-yard runs to have a first down at the one. Lewis didn’t go in on the first try, but Anderson was able to get in on the next play.
After a defensive stop by the Browns, the offense moved into Bear’s territory on a third down reception by Steve Heiden, but he was stripped of the ball and Manning came up with the fumble and the Bears started at the Browns’ 49.
Quickly, the Bears made the Browns pay as Forte went in for his second touchdown of the game with 1:42 to play in the third quarter to make it 23-6. The score was set up as Cutler hit Johnny Knox down the sideline for a gain of 39 yards to the 10. He beat Eric Wright, who was injured on the play.
The Bears put the final nail in the coffin as Charles Tillman intercepted Anderson and returned it 21 yards for a touchdown to make it 30-6 with 3:14 left.
Brady Quinn replaced Anderson on the next series. He had a 9-yard pass to Massaquoi on the first play, but a drop by Heiden on third down gave the ball back to the Bears.
Offensive Woes Continue: The Browns offensive drought continued in the first half, but they did score a touchdown in the second half. The Browns have had four games this season without a touchdown. The Browns had no first downs in the first half until they picked one up with 1:21 to play in the first half. On their first five positions, the Browns had three, three-and-outs and two turnovers. QB Derek Anderson started 1-of-6 for 4 yards with one interception. His only completion was to FB Lawrence Vickers until he hit WR Mike Furrey for nine yards to start the two-minute offense after the Bears took a 16-0 lead. WR Josh Cribbs picked up the first down of the half with 1:21 to play in the first half on a six-yard run. RB Jamal Lewis had 16 carries for 69 yards, including a fumble. The Browns scored a touchdown on their first possession of the second half after a 12-yard punt by the Bears. Cribbs had 28 yards on six carries, while Jerome Harrison had five carries for 19 yards. WR Mohamed Massaquoi had two catches for 28 yards to lead the receivers. He had a fumble. Anderson finished with a 10.5 QB rating. He was 6–of-17 for 76 yards and two interceptions.
Brady Sighting: With 3:04 to play in the game, Mangini finally pulled the plug on QB Derek Anderson. He hit WR Mohamed Massaquoi on the first play and had a drop from TE Steve Heiden on third down. Quinn was 1-of-3 for 9 yards.
Nice Stand: The Browns defense showed some grit as they made a goal line stand after the Bears had a first down on the two late in the game. It appeared that WR Devin Hester would score as he broke loose on a short pass and looked as though he would score, but Mike Adams caught him from behind at the two-yard line. The Browns stopped the Bears on four consecutive plays.
Turnovers: The Bears scored 20 points off of Browns turnovers. The Browns turned the ball over twice in the first half and the Bears picked up two field goals as a result. QB Derek Anderson was intercepted by DB Danny Manning and RB Jamal Lewis fumbled early in the second quarter as it appeared he and Anderson didn’t connect on the exchange. The Bears turned the mistakes into field goals. In the third quarter, TE Steve Heiden fumbled and the Bears scored a touchdown. After Brodney Pool intercepted a pass from Cutler at the Bears’ 34, Anderson hit Mohamed Massaquoi and he fumbled it back to the Bears on the next play. Anderson threw an interception that DB Charles Tillman returned 21 yards for a touchdown.The Browns turned the ball over five times to the Bears’ one.
Stuckey Sighting: WR Chansi Stuckey caught a pass in the third quarter for an 11-yard gain. It was his only catch of the game.
Wright Out: CB Eric Wright injured his shoulder and was replaced by rookie CB Coye Francies. Wright returned after Francies was injured, but Francies returned, as well.
Pool Pick: DB Brodney Pool made his third interception of the season after LB Kaluka Maiava deflected a pass from QB Jay Cutler in the third quarter. Pool was benched in favor of Mike Adams as the starting safety.
Field Position: The Bears started at the Browns’ 44, Bears’ 41 and the Browns’ 13 on three of their first four possessions. The Browns held the Bears to just two field goals in that time period.
Sack Men: DL Kenyon Coleman sacked QB Jay Cutler on the second series. LB Eric Barton sacked Cutler on the next series and forced a fumble that RB Matt Forte recovered for a 25-yard loss putting the Bears in a second-and-35 situation. However, the Bears challenged the call and it the call was reversed resulting in an incomplete pass saving 25 yards. LB Kamerion Wimbley picked up his fifth sack of the season to force a field goal in the second quarter. DL Corey Williams had the third sack for the Browns in the third quarter. LB Jason Trusnik added a sack in the third quarter.
Wildcat Returns: On the second series, the Browns opened in the wildcat formation and Josh Cribbs picked up two yards on first down, before switching back to the traditional offense for the next two. On third down-and-6, Cribbs ran for four yards. Just before the half, Cribbs picked up the Browns’ first first down of the half on a six-yard run. Cribbs had four carries for 24 yards and finished with six for 28.
Dawson Back: After missing several games, K Phil Dawson returned, but had his first PAT attempt blocked.
Nothing New: The Browns took the opening kickoff and were a quick three-and-out. Two short runs by RB Jamal Lewis and an incomplete pass by QB Derek Anderson forced the Browns to punt on their first possession. In fact, the Browns were three-and-out on their first three possessions.
Save the Day Dave: Besides bailing the Browns out on field position all season, P Dave Zastudil tackled PR Devin Hester on the game’s first punt after Hester returned the punt 32 yards to the Browns’ 44. It most likely saved a touchdown and the Browns were able to force the Bears to punt.
Shaking Things Up: Mangini started OL Rex Hadnot at RG in place of Floyd Womack. TE Steve Heiden started over Robert Royal, while LB David Bowens started at inside linebacker for Kaluka Maiava and LB Jason Trusnik started at OLB in Bowens’ place. Mike Adams started at safety in place of Brodney Pool at free safety.