Tuesday, October 23, 2012
Lions can't handle Bears' four-man rush
By ESPN Stats & Information
After turning the ball over four times in their previous four games combined, the Detroit Lions lost three fumbles and had one pass intercepted Monday en route to a 13-7 defeat against the Chicago Bears.
It was the third game this season in which the Bears had four-or-more takeaways and brought their total for the season to 21. Their +13 turnover differential is the best in the league.
According to the Elias Sports Bureau, that’s Chicago's most takeaways through its first six games of a season since Dick Butkus and company had 23 through six games in 1971, four of which were on interceptions by Butkus.
Over the last 15 seasons (1998–2012), the only other team with 21 takeaways through six games was the 2005 Bengals, who also had 21.
Matthew Stafford was responsible for one of the Lions turnovers as he threw an interception late in the fourth quarter. It came when the Bears sent four pass rushers.
Entering Monday’s game, Stafford had faced four-or-fewer pass rushers on 87.9 percent of dropbacks, more than any other quarterback in the league.
The Bears also recorded two of their three sacks when sending four pass rushers. They now have a league-high 17 sacks and 11 interceptions on the season when sending such pressure.
The Lions turned the ball over on three of their 12 plays in the red zone Monday, bringing their season total to a league-high five.
Calvin Johnson was not a factor in the game as he caught only three of his 11 targets for 34 yards, breaking his streak of five consecutive road games with at least 90 yards. Johnson’s one drop against the Bears matched the number he had in his last 10 road games combined.
Lovie Smith improves to 9-2 on Monday Night Football. Among active coaches, only Mike Tomlin has a better win percentage on Monday nights, with a minimum five games.