Chicago Bears at Pittsburgh Steelers 9/22/13 NFL Score, Recap, News and Notes
Final Score: Chicago Bears 40, Pittsburgh Steelers 23
September 22, 2013
The Week 3 edition of “Sunday Night Football” contained two of the NFL’s most beloved franchises, but so far this season, there hasn’t been much to love about the Steelers’ performances. Pittsburgh came into the game at an ugly 0-2 after losses to Tennessee and the Bengals, and was trying to find some traction against the Chicago Bears, who were a somewhat surprising 2-0 after a pair of comeback wins in the first two weeks.
Let’s take a closer look at the numbers and the game as a whole as we break down what happened. We’ll also look forward to next week so we can try to determine what’s in store for these two franchises.
What Happened: This one got ugly in a hurry, but turned competitive later. The Bears’ Major Wright picked off an errant Ben Roethlisberger pass and returned it for a score to give Chicago a 21-point lead in the first half. The Steelers eventually found some life and made things interesting, however, pulling to within four with just over 10 minutes left during the final quarter. After that it was all Chicago. When the dust settled, the Bears emerged with a 40-23 victory that brings them to 3-0 on the season. As for Pittsburgh, their 0-3 start is the team’s worst since 2000.
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The Stars: There are a lot of players who deserve some recognition for this one, but we’ll start with the Bears defense. They forced five turnovers (and managed points off four of them) to help keep the game out of reach for an improbable Steelers comeback. Wright’s interception return was Chicago’s 10th pick-six since the beginning of last year.
The Bears’ star RB Matt Forte has been having a solid year so far, and that trend continued this week. He posted 87 yards and a score on 16 carries, then added another 24 yards on four receptions.
For the Steelers, Antonio Brown had a huge statistical game, hauling in nine receptions for 196 yards and two touchdowns. Kicker Shaun Suisham was perfect on the night, with three field goals and a pair of extra points to his credit.
The Goats: First we’ll point the finger at Roethlisberger, who had another rough game. He threw for 406 yards and a pair of touchdowns, but also tossed two interceptions and fumbled three times (he lost two). It’s not all his fault, however, as the Steelers are working with a patchwork offensive line. That’s part of the reason their running game just can’t seem to get going; Jonathan Dwyer and Felix Jones managed just 73 yards between them. Is Le’Veon Bell healthy yet?
We thought about putting Bears QB Jay Cutler here--he threw for just 159 yards--but with the defense playing so well, he didn’t really need to do a whole lot besides take care of the ball, and that’s exactly what he did. Cutler also came up big in the waning minutes with a solid TD pass to Earl Bennett that helped seal the game.
Injuries: The Bears lost a pair of players: DT Henry Melton and CB Charles Tillman both went down with knee and groin injuries, respectively. If those turn out to be anything serious, it’ll be a huge loss to the defense. For what it's worth, Tillman reportedly could have returned to the game had it been deemed necessary.
Pittsburgh emerged unscathed from this one, but the major injury concern is rookie RB Le’Veon Bell. There’s a chance he could come back next week, but it’s more likely we’ll see him after the team’s bye. They certainly need him, that’s for sure.
Outlook: The Steelers will head to Minnesota in Week 4 to face the 0-3 Vikings in a battle of winless teams. The good news there is that somebody has to win.
The Bears, meanwhile, also have a road game. They’ll make the short trip up to Detroit to visit the 2-1 Lions, who are coming off a seven-point win over the Redskins this week.
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