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Monday, January 13, 2014
10 plays that shaped the season: No. 6

By Michael C. Wright
ESPN.com

James Laurinaitis
The Bears weren't able to dig out of the hole created by James Laurinaitis' fumble recovery.
WHEN: Nov. 24, 2013

WHERE: A 42-21 loss to the St. Louis Rams

THE PLAY: Matt Forte fumbles at the end of a run for no gain on Chicago's first offensive play from scrimmage with James Laurinaitis recovering at the Bears' 7.

WHAT THEY SAID: Bears coach Marc Trestman: “We had the fumble and the touchdown offensively, that really hurt us, too, to get down 14-0. But our guys didn't flinch, they kept fighting. We didn't stop the run today; we still had too many penalties in all three phases. That really hurt us: field position, kicking game. Offensively and defensively, the penalties really hurt us. Every one of them strongly affected the football game. We didn't get that done. We weren't able to score fast enough when we got into the red zone. We had the fourth-and-1 stop and we were going to go for it on fourth down. This was a bit of a track meet out there today, and I know that those three points seem like a lot, but I am very confident that it was the right thing to do. In the long run we were hoping that if the offense didn't make it that the defense would make the stop, and we would be in three-point range again. We had to play for points today because the nature of the game and the pace of the game was frantic out there."

IMPACT OF THE PLAY: Forte's fumble allowed the Rams to take a 14-0 lead three plays later on Zac Stacy's 1-yard run. The early deficit proved insurmountable, because as Trestman said, the game turned into a track meet. Obviously, the defense didn't help as it gave up 258 yards rushing. The club was also penalized 10 times for 84 yards. Interestingly, the Bears cut the early deficit to 14-7 in the first quarter, 21-14 in the second and 27-21 in the fourth. But every time the Bears moved closer, St. Louis scored on its next possession to eventually seize a two-score lead.