Tuesday, December 10, 2013
Keys to victory: Bears 45, Cowboys 28
By ESPN Stats & Information
The Chicago Bears put on an offensive display in Monday night’s 45-28 win over the Dallas Cowboys, helping them move into a tie atop the NFC North division with the Detroit Lions.
The Bears had nine offensive possessions, scoring five touchdowns, kicking three field goals and taking a knee to end the game. They’re just the third team to have a game without punting this season, joining the Packers and Broncos, with two of those games coming against the Cowboys.
Here were the three biggest keys for Chicago’s victory on Monday Night Football.
McCown Makes Bears History
McCown finished with 348 passing yards, four touchdowns and no interceptions. In Bears franchise history, only one other quarterback has had a game in which he threw for over 300 yards with at least four touchdown passes and no interceptions, that was Erik Kramer in a 1995 game that the Bears lost to the Rams.
McCown also added a rushing touchdown in the victory. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, McCown is the first Bears quarterback with five touchdowns (passing plus rushing) in a game since Johnny Lujack did it in 1949.
Bears WR Duo Emerges as Best in NFL
Brandon Marshall finished with 100 receiving yards, giving him over 1,000 on the season, the seventh straight season Marshall has topped 1,000 receiving yards. He’s just the fourth player in Bears history with multiple 1,000-yard receiving seasons for the team.
He and teammate Alshon Jeffery are already over 1,000 yards on the season with three games remaining. They’re just the second set of Bears teammates to each have 1,000 receiving yards in the same season, joining Curtis Conway and Jeff Graham, who did it in 1995.
Marshall and Jeffery have combined for 2,283 receiving yards this season, the most combined yards by a pair of teammates this season.
Cowboys Defense Continues to Struggle
Although Tony Romo is criticized for his record in December and later (with Monday’s loss, his career record in such games is now 13-20), he threw three touchdowns in the loss. Instead, it was the Cowboys defense that struggled, as they've been doing all season.
After allowing 490 yards to the Bears, the Cowboys defense is allowing 426.8 yards per game this season, more than 25 more than any other team.
Dallas is on pace to give up 6,830 yards this season, not only the most in franchise history, but the second-most by any team in NFL history, trailing only last year’s Saints (7,042).
It’s the fifth time this season the Cowboys have allowed at least 490 yards in a game. No other team has two such games this season.