Despite the best efforts of the offense to give the game away, the Bears held on to a 24-20 win over the Eagles Sunday night after the defense came up with a huge goal line stop on 4th and 1 late in the game.
Following a Robbie Gould field goal that gave the Bears a 24-20 lead with just over 10 minutes remaining in the game, Donovan McNabb and Correll Buckhalter led Philadelphia on a 70-yard drive down to the Chicago 4-yard line. But the Bears’ defense held the Eagles out o the end zone on four straight rushing attempts, including stonewalling Buckhalter on 4th and 1 with just under four minutes to play.
In two previous games against the Panthers and Bucs, the Bears blew double-digit leads in the fourth quarter, largely because the offense couldn’t gain first downs late in each game. But they were able to move the ball successfully on their final possession Sunday night, eating up three minutes of the clock and leaving the Eagles with only one last desperation pass at the end. It was clear not having Brian Westbrook really hurt Philly’s offense, even though Buckhalter did finish with a 4.1 YPC average.
While Chicago will take the win, Philadelphia can look at several blown opportunities to come away with a victory. Bears’ QB Kyle Orton threw two interceptions, including one in the end zone that could have netted Chicago points, and also fumbled twice (one was just as much Kevin Jones’ fault after a botched handoff). But the Eagles could only turn Chicago’s gaffs into field goals and came up short in the end. The Bears’ defense was once again the stars, keeping Philly out of the end zone and covering up the offenses’ mistakes. The score doesn’t indicate it, but Chicago’s effort was probably one of the better defensive efforts of the year.