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Green Bay at Chicago

Bears rally, beat Pack in OT to stay alive in playoff chase

CBSSports.com wire reports
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CHICAGO -- Alex Brown reached up and saved the Chicago Bears' season.

COMMENTARY
Will to win why Bears will make NFC playoffs
by Gregg Doyel
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Brown blocked Mason Crosby's 38-yard attempt with 18 seconds to go in the fourth quarter Monday night, forcing overtime against the Green Bay Packers.

And once the Bears made it to the extra period, reliable Robbie Gould kicked a 38-yard field goal for a 20-17 win.

Now, after the icy victory, the Bears are still in the running for the playoffs.

"We got a great push from a lot of different people. I was just the one who got my hand on it," Brown said.

"We were saying on the sidelines that we have to block it. I got through pretty good but I didn't really think that was going to happen. You just go as hard as you can and see if you can get a hand up and hopefully you can get it."

The Bears (9-6), who stayed in contention for the NFC North over the weekend when Atlanta beat Minnesota, won their third in a row and rallied from a 14-3 halftime deficit to do it.

If the Bears win at Houston Sunday and the Vikings lose at home to the Giants, Chicago captures the NFC North. Minnesota holds the tiebreaker over the Bears, so if both teams win on the final Sunday, the Vikings win the division. But Chicago is still alive for a wild-card berth, too.

"Everything fell right, gave us a lot of momentum and energy coming into this game. We just had to carry it all the way through," quarterback Kyle Orton said.

And the Bears had to overcome the elements, too, as did the Packers.

The temperature at Soldier Field was announced at 2 degrees, making it the coldest home game in Bears history since records started being kept in 1963. The wind chill was 13 below, the second-lowest in recorded team annals, so the longtime rivals known for their ability to play in cold weather were tested by the elements.

Orton hit a 17-yard pass to Greg Olsen and a 15-yard penalty on Green Bay's Aaron Rouse for a horse collar tackle gave the Bears the ball at the Green Bay 35 in overtime. A third-down pass of 14 yards to Matt Forte got it to the Green Bay 20 to set up the winning kick -- Gould's second straight game winner in overtime.

"You know it's going to be chilly, the ground is going to be hard. You've just got to go out there and do your job. There's no excuses for missing," Gould said

Green Bay (5-10) dominated the first half, but lost its fifth in a row after routing the Bears 37-3 at Lambeau Field in mid-November.

"It's disappointing. It's tough. It's frustrating," Green Bay quarterback Aaron Rodgers said.

Forte's 3-yard TD with 3:11 left lifted the Bears into a tie. The score came one play after Forte just made a first down on a fourth-and-2 run.

But on the ensuing kickoff, Green Bay's Will Blackmon returned a short kick 32 yards and a personal foul on Chicago's Adrian Peterson for tackling him out of bounds, put the ball on the Bears 35.

Rodgers' third down pass of 9 yards to James Jones gave the Packers a first down at the Bears 24 with two minutes left.

The Packers ran down the clock behind the running of Ryan Grant, moving to the 20 and trying to set up a game winner from Crosby, but Brown blocked the kick.

"I have been hitting the ball well this year and I have been making kicks and it just didn't fall our way this game," Crosby said. "Everything has to be right and I just didn't finish my end of the deal."

In the first half, Rodgers had plenty of time to throw and completed 16 of 24 passes for 176 yards, throwing TD passes to Greg Jennings and Grant as Green Bay moved ahead 14-3. Rodgers finished 24-of-39 for 260 yards.

The Bears, meanwhile, sputtered and were outgained 221-48 in the first two quarters as their playoff hopes were on the verge of evaporating into the cold air.

"There was a lot of talk going on in the offensive huddle 'we've got to do it now.' We weren't playing good," Orton said. "We weren't running the ball. We weren't throwing the ball. We just weren't playing well at all. We just said, 'This is our season. It's coming down to this. And if we don't do anything, we're done.'"

Charles Woodson's sixth interception of the season and a return to the 30 helped the Packers move to the 5, but the Bears held and forced a 28-yard field goal from Crosby that put Green Bay up 17-10 early in the final quarter.

Forte, who had only 20 yards rushing through the first three quarters, broke off a 28-yard run to the Packers 23 late in the final quarter. Forte had two more carries to give Chicago a first down at the 12. Two more runs by Forte and a pass to Devin Hester left the Bears with a fourth-and-2 from the Packers 4 with just under four minutes left. Forte just got the first down and the Bears were able to tie it.

Chicago received a break on its first possession of the third quarter when Brad Maynard's punt hit Green Bay's Jarrett Bush, who was blocking on the play, and the Bears' Jason Davis recovered at the 27. Three plays after a 21-yard pass to Desmond Clark, Orton hit Olsen on a 3-yard TD pass, making it 14-10.

Using some trickery, the Packers moved in for a 7-0 lead with 6:21 left in the second quarter.

The Packers faked a punt on a fourth-and-2 from the Bears 37, snapping the ball to backup quarterback Matt Flynn, who carried 6 yards for the first down.

From there Grant carried four consecutive times for 24 yards to the 7. And on a third down, Rogers found Jennings with the TD pass that capped the 14-play, 91-yard drive.

Notes

  • It was the 177th meeting between the teams, including one in the playoffs. The Bears lead the series 91-80-6.
  • Bears S Mike Brown injured his calf late in the second quarter and did not return.
Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
 
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Robbie Gould (center) kicks a game winner for the second consecutive week for the 9-6 Bears.
 
Robbie Gould (center) kicks a game winner for the second consecutive week for the 9-6 Bears. (Getty Images)
 

 

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Mon. Dec. 22Final OT
OT
Green Bay
(5-10)
01403017
Chicago
(9-6)
0377320
GB - Pass: A. Rodgers (24-39, 260), Rec: D. Driver (6-63)
CHI - Pass: K. Orton (14-27, 142), Rush: M. Forte (23-73)
Scoring Summary
1ST QUARTER
None
2ND QUARTER
TDGreg Jennings, 7 Yd pass from Aaron Rodgers (Mason Crosby kick is good), 6:21. Drive: 14 plays, 91 yards in 7:37.
FGRobbie Gould 31 Yd, 4:06. Drive: 5 plays, 16 yards in 2:15.
TDRyan Grant, 17 Yd pass from Aaron Rodgers (Mason Crosby kick is good), 1:04. Drive: 6 plays, 58 yards in 3:02.
3RD QUARTER
TDGreg Olsen, 3 Yd pass from Kyle Orton (Robbie Gould kick is good), 10:59. Drive: 5 plays, 27 yards in 2:04.
4TH QUARTER
FGMason Crosby 28 Yd, 12:58. Drive: 9 plays, 20 yards in 3:59.
TDMatt Forte, 3 Yd run (Robbie Gould kick is good), 3:11. Drive: 8 plays, 51 yards in 4:03.
OT
FGRobbie Gould 38 Yd, 11:28. Drive: 7 plays, 47 yards in 3:32.
Players of the Game
Chicago

M. Forte
Rush 23
Yds 73
Avg 3.2
TD 1
Green Bay

A. Rodgers
Att 39
Comp 24
Yds 260
TD 2
 
Green Bay
PassingCP/ATYDSTDINT
A. Rodgers24/3926021
RushingATTYDSTDLG
R. Grant2561012
M. Flynn1606
D. Wynn1404
A. Rodgers2-60-1
ReceivingRECYDSTDLG
D. Driver663017
G. Jennings638110
J. Finley135035
J. Jones227018
J. Nelson227015
R. Grant320117
R. Martin116016
T. Humphrey114014
J. Kuhn113013
D. Wynn1707
Chicago
PassingCP/ATYDSTDINT
K. Orton14/2714212
RushingATTYDSTDLG
M. Forte2373128
A. Peterson2201
K. Orton1-10-1
ReceivingRECYDSTDLG
G. Olsen549117
D. Clark437021
M. Forte228014
B. Lloyd116016
D. Hester21209
Complete Player Stats
Other Games
SD 41 Final
TB 24
NYJ 3 Final
SEA 13
HOU 16 Final
OAK 27
BUF 30 Final
DEN 23
PHI 3 Final
WAS 10
PIT 14 Final
TEN 31
SF 17 Final
STL 16
CAR 28 Final
NYG 34
ARI 7 Final
NE 47
ATL 24 Final
MIN 17
MIA 38 Final
KC 31
NO 42 Final
DET 7
CIN 14 Final
CLE 0
BAL 33 Final
DAL 24
IND 31 Final
JAC 24