|ESPN.com: NFC North||[Print without images]|
|A pair of clutch Matt Prater field goals aided the Broncos' comeback win on Sunday.|
DENVER -- The Chicago Bears couldn’t ward off the magic of Tim Tebow and the Denver Broncos in dropping a 13-10 heartbreaker in overtime Sunday that will dramatically impact their standing in the NFC wildcard race.
A Marion Barber fumble sealed the team’s fate in overtime, and a questionable decision by the running back to step out of bounds -- which stopped the clock -- played a significant role in Denver tying the game at the end of regulation to send it into OT.
Marion, Marion, Marion…
Let’s take a closer look:
What it means: The Bears put themselves in a difficult spot for earning the postseason berth they seek, and they certainly didn’t get any help from the other NFC teams in the wildcard hunt.
Interestingly, last week all the teams in contention for the wildcard spots -- the Bears, Atlanta Falcons and Detroit Lions -- lost their respective games, leaving the standings unchanged. But the opposite transpired on Sunday, with every team in the NFC hunt except for the Bears winning their games.
So Chicago’s loss drops it out of the wildcard picture. The club will likely have to win each of its remaining four games to sneak back into the race.
Golden Goose: Robbie Gould kicked a 57-yard field goal to start the fourth quarter, which appeared long enough to be good from a distance of approximately 65 yards.
Gould’s field goal was the longest in team history, and broke his own personal best of 54 yards last season against the Detroit Lions.
Prior to Gould’s bomb on Sunday, Kevin Butler and Bob Thomas were tied for the longest field goals in franchise history (55 yards). Butler connected on 55 yarders twice: on Dec. 12, 1993 at Tampa Bay, and on Oct. 25, 1993 against the Minnesota Vikings.
Thomas kicked a 55-yard field goal game in 1975 against the Los Angeles Rams.
What’s next: The Bears have ended their run of AFC West foes. Next week they host Pete Carroll and the Seattle Seahawks.