Bears start fast to beat the Lions; end ten-game NFC North losing streak
CHICAGO – If you want to win your division, it’s best you win games against your division.
History proves this often in the National Football League – and proof comes in the lack of success from the Bears over the past half-decade. Since 2013, the team has not even been at .500 in the division, with their last 3-3 record coming in 2012.
Last season was as bad as you could get for the Bears, who dropped all six of their games against NFC North opponents. A loss to the Packers to open the 2018 season extended their division losing streak to ten games.
Sunday gave them their best chance to snap the streak this season. Coming off two-straight wins, with Khalil Mack and Allen Robinson in the lineup, along with the recent struggles of their opponents, optimism was high for a division win at Soldier Field.
It didn’t take long for that to be the case.
The Bears scored on their first four drives of the game and never looked back, dominating the majority of the game in a 34-22 victory that takes them to 6-3 on the season. It snaps the ten-game NFC North losing streak as they continue to hold onto first place in the division.
Mitchell Trubisky and the Bears offense grabbed control of the game earlier with a quartet of scoring drives. The first was eight plays and 75 yards, with Tarik Cohen completing the drive with a three-yard run to make it 6-0 after Cody Parkey missed the point-after touchdown. On the next drive the offense went even farther – 91 yards – as Trubisky found Robinson for a 36-yard score to make it 13-0.
Only four plays were needed in the second quarter for the Bears to find the endzone again. A 17-yard pass to Tarik Cohen and a 45-yard strike to Anthony Miller for the touchdown made up most of the damage. On the scoring play, Miller got wide open, then shed a tackle on the sidelines for the score, yet the lead was only 19-0 after another Parkey missed PAT.
Thanks to Bryce Callahan, who intercepted a pass at the Detroit 18-yard line on the following series, the Bears had a short field for another scoring drive. Trubisky called his own number and rushed it in from four-yards out to make it 26-0.
Detroit would counter with the next ten points of the game, scoring on a one-yard touchdown run from Kerryon Johnson late in the first half to make it 26-7 at the half. Matt Prater’s 52-yard field goal made it 26-10 as the Lions stayed within reach of the Bears early in the second half, especially when Parkey hit the uprights on two field goal attempts in the third quarter.
Trubisky got the Bears back in the endzone later in the third, hitting Trey Burton with a 24-yard completion to start the drive then finiding Robinson for a 26-yard score on the next. Instead of the extra point, the Bears went for two and converted on a pass from Trubisky to Burton.
Yet the Lions wouldn’t go away, putting together back-to-back touchdown drives in the fourth quarter. Matthew Stafford hit Kenny Golladay for a five-yard score that made it 34-16 after the two-point try was no good. After a successful onside kick, Johnson caught a touchdown pass from Stafford to make it 34-22, but another attempt at two points failed.