Originally written on isportsweb.com  |  Last updated 6/29/14

DETROIT - JANUARY 3: Devin Hester #23 of the Chicago Bears looks on during the game against the Detroit Lions on January 3, 2010 at Ford Field in Detroit, Michigan. (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)

The Headline: The Bears defense and special teams comes up big in win against the Panthers

The Story: The Carolina Panthers could not stop the Bears rushing attack. Chicago got it going on the ground and continued to pound the Panthers defense throughout the game. Matt Forte had been asking for more carries, and he got them in this game. They went to the big running back 25 times, and he delivered with over 200 yards rushing. As a team, the Bears averaged 7.2 yards per rush in this game. Carolina’s defense has had trouble stopping the run this season, and that weakness continued to be a problem against the Bears today.

The Panthers also did not help themselves with turnovers and missed opportunities to extend drives on third downs. For instance, Cam Newton played a pretty good game overall, but his one slip-up was an interception that was returned by D.J. Moore for a 20-yard touchdown. This was one of the two non-offensive touchdowns that the Bears scored. The other was an electrifying 69-yard punt return touchdown, by the one and only, Devin Hester. With that return, he broke Eric Metclaf’s record for the most all-time punt return touchdowns with 11. That guy is simply amazing and has the chance to take it to the house any time he touches the ball. He also had a 73-yard kickoff return that set up a very short drive for Chicago, which was capped off by a Matt Forte 17-yard touchdown.

Offensively, the Panthers played well but failed to keep their drives alive. They managed to only convert 17% of their third downs (2-12 on third downs). Cam had another huge day statistically throwing and running the football. He accounted for over 400 total yards and achieved an 83.1 QB rating. His greatest asset, Steve Smith had a great day amassing 181 receiving yards with 8 receptions. However, this would not be enough to overcome the Bears.

Devin Hester - 69 yard punt return TD

X-Factor: Devin Hester. 69-yard punt return touchdown. 73-yard kickoff return. His ability to score on special teams and set up good field position for the Bears offense is invaluable. No one can account for or imitate his acceleration to get up field or his speed to break away from defenders.

Offensive Player of the Game: Matt Forte, 25 rushes, 205 yards, 1 touchdown

Defensive Player of the Game: D.J. Moore, 2 tackles, 2 passes deflected, 1 INT TD

What’s Next: The Carolina Panthers will continue through the toughest stretch of their schedule and will head into Atlanta next week to take on the Atlanta Falcons. This will be a tough game against a division rival. However, It should serve as a good measuring stick for the young team.

Similarly, the Chicago Bears have a few division foes coming up as well. They will go to Detroit next week to take on the undefeated Lions.  That game should be very entertaining to watch, as Matthew Stafford and Calvin Johnson have quickly become one of the best QB-WR tandems in the league. After that, the Bears will face the Minnesota Vikings, who have yet to win a game this season.

 

 

MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Decision on Ray Rice's appeal could come Wednesday

Jaguars coach calls out Blake Bortles: ‘We expect more’

Report: Jets prevented Ryan from talking about dad's health

Kobe Bryant on 3-11 Lakers: 'We're not a 3-11 team'

Matt Ryan defends beleaguered Falcons head coach Mike Smith

Bill Belichick on similarities between Brady, Rodgers: No. 12

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Devon Still accused of not paying child support

Giants reportedly in talks with Max Scherzer, Chase Headley

Report: Robert Griffin III benched by Redskins for McCoy

Dice-K Matsuzaka headed back to Japan

Lovie Smith: 2-9 Bucs are still in playoff contention

UCLA QB Brett Hundley likely to enter NFL draft

WATCH: Coyotes lose in ugly fashion, score own goal in OT

Golden State Warriors are having tons of fun on team plane

Jenn Sterger hints she'll be back in her FSU cowgirl gear for game

Game of the week: Kansas City Chiefs vs. Denver Broncos

Top storyline for each Week 13 NFL game

Floyd Mayweather throws shade at Manny Pacquiao on Instagram

10 greatest Thanksgiving Day games in NFL history

Derrick Rose leaves game with hamstring tightness

WATCH: Ty Lawson drops Kirk Hinrich to the floor

Alabama DL trolls Auburn with Instagram photo

Rockies pitcher takes shot at former Astros pitcher

WATCH: Paul Pierce signs autograph during game

NFL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.

Game of the week: Kansas City Chiefs vs. Denver Broncos

Rose leaves with injury again

WATCH: Pierce signs for fan during game

Report: McCoy to start over RG3

Braxton Miller headed to Oregon?

10 most one-sided college football rivalries

Pierce: C's Big Three like 'Holy Trinity'

Maclin unhappy with Cooper comments

Post-Week 13 CFB Playoff projection

What has Masai Ujiri built in Toronto?

How L.A. should replace Hanley

Lester, Red Sox still talking contract

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.