Lions 7

(2-4, 1-3 away)

Bears 13

(5-1, 3-0 home)

Coverage: ESPN/WatchESPN

8:30 PM ET, October 22, 2012

Soldier Field, Chicago, IL 

1 2 3 4 T
DET 0 0 0 77
CHI 10 0 3 013

Top Performers

Passing: M. Stafford (DET) - 263 YDS, 1 TD, 1 INT

Rushing: M. Forte (CHI) - 22 CAR, 96 YDS

Receiving: B. Marshall (CHI) - 6 REC, 81 YDS, 1 TD

Lions-Bears Preview


Sitting atop the NFC North, the Chicago Bears appear anything but satisfied with plenty of football still to come.

Having pulled out a much-needed win last weekend, the last-place Detroit Lions are hoping to take another step in the right direction Monday night.

Looking to pick up where they left off before their bye, the Bears try to continue their recent domination of the Lions as these division rivals square off in what could be another intense showdown at Soldier Field.

Chicago (4-1) has had its way with Detroit (2-3) of late, taking seven of eight in the series -- including a 37-13 home win Nov. 13. The teams got into a sideline-clearing fight in that game after Matthew Stafford ripped off D.J. Moore's helmet during Tim Jennings' interception return.

"There's always going to be bad blood," Jennings told the team's official website. "Just the fact that we're Chicago and they're Detroit, and they're in our division and we know we have to go through one another to get to that championship that we need to get to, there's always going to be bad blood with them."

The Lions figure to have trouble ending their woes in this series if the Bears' recent efforts are any indication. Chicago outscored Jacksonville 38-0 in the second half of a 41-3 road win Oct. 7, extending its winning streak to three behind another superb defensive display.

Charles Tillman and Lance Briggs became the first teammates to each return interceptions for touchdowns in consecutive weeks, giving the Bears a league-high 13 picks on the season.

"I just know that we need to keep it going. Guys realize ... taking the ball away is a part of a good defensive game for us," said coach Lovie Smith, whose team is allowing an NFL-low 14.2 points per contest. "We can't wait for them to turn the ball over. We have to go and get it. I think the last couple weeks or so, I think defensively we have scored about as many as the defense has given up. I think it's just a mindset. We have guys that have been around here a long time."

The Bears, who moved into sole possession of first place with Minnesota's 38-26 loss at Washington, sit one-half game ahead of the Vikings and two in front of the Lions.

"Our division took a step up," Smith said. "But as I told the team ... none of that really matters for us. We like the position we're in. Any week you have to be ready to go to play your best football. That's what I saw from (last) weekend. Teams that played 60 minutes or more end up winning the football game.

"Detroit, this week ... I'm sure they've been waiting for this game for a long time."

Coming off their bye, the Lions -- trailing by 10 with just over five minutes remaining in regulation -- appeared headed for a fourth consecutive loss before clawing their way back to win 26-23 in overtime at Philadelphia last Sunday. Jason Hanson connected on the game-winning field goal in OT, his fourth of the afternoon.

The Lions overcame 16 penalties, becoming the first team to win with that many since Cincinnati's 17 in a 37-8 win over Minnesota on Sept. 18, 2005.

"I think it was a big step for us as a team, playing team football today and it was a lot of spirit and guys picking each other up," coach Jim Schwartz told the team's official website. "I think that's a good sign of things to come for this team."

Stafford threw for 311 yards with a touchdown and an interception while safety Louis Delmas -- making his season debut following knee surgery -- had one of the Lions' two picks.

Detroit didn't pick off a pass in its first four games.

"Turnover ratio is well-documented as being part of success," Schwartz said. "But I think we need to worry about executing schemes, making plays, those kind of things. And when you do, you'll take care of the football and also you'll have a chance to get the football."

While Detroit is allowing 3.7 yards per carry -- 10th in the league -- it could have its hands full with Matt Forte. The Pro Bowl back has given the Lions fits over the last eight games in this series, compiling 975 yards from scrimmage and seven touchdowns.

Jay Cutler, meanwhile, has thrown 10 touchdowns and one interception while posting a 105.4 rating in his six games against the Lions in a Bears uniform.

Chicago, 8-2 on Monday night under Smith, has outscored Detroit by an average of 14.3 points during a four-game home winning streak.


Passing Leaders

M. Stafford67.242623213
D. Orlovsky55.020111
J. Cutler64.436592111
J. Clausen57.518401

Rushing Leaders

A. Abdullah1435974.22
J. Bell903113.54
M. Forte2188984.14
J. Langford1485373.66

Receiving Leaders

C. Johnson88121413.89
G. Tate908139.06
A. Jeffery5480714.94
M. Wilson2846416.61

Team Averages & NFL Ranks

Total YardsDET
Yards PassingDET
Yards RushingDET
Yards AllowedDET
Pass Yds AllowedDET
Rush Yds AllowedDET

Head to Head Matchups (Since 2001)

Chicago leads 17-7
Nov 13, 2011DET 13, @CHI 37
Oct 10, 2011DET 24, CHI 13
Dec 5, 2010DET 20, CHI 24
Sep 12, 2010DET 14, @CHI 19
Jan 3, 2010DET 23, CHI 37
Oct 4, 2009DET 24, @CHI 48
Nov 2, 2008DET 23, @CHI 27
Oct 5, 2008DET 7, CHI 34
Oct 28, 2007DET 16, @CHI 7
Sep 30, 2007DET 37, CHI 27
Dec 24, 2006DET 21, CHI 26
Sep 17, 2006DET 7, @CHI 34
Oct 30, 2005DET 13, CHI 19
Sep 18, 2005DET 6, @CHI 38
Dec 26, 2004DET 19, CHI 13
Sep 12, 2004DET 20, @CHI 16
Nov 9, 2003DET 12, CHI 10
Oct 26, 2003DET 16, @CHI 24
Nov 24, 2002DET 17, @CHI 20
Oct 20, 2002DET 23, CHI 20
Dec 30, 2001DET 0, CHI 24
Dec 2, 2001DET 10, @CHI 13

Research Notes

Only 17.2 percent of Matt Forte's rushes this season have gone outside the tackles, compared to 35.0 percent last season. Since the start of last season, Forte has averaged 6.1 yards per rush outside the tackles, second-best among running backs with 50 such runs.
Matthew Stafford has taken time to warm up this season, with over 26 percent of his first quarter passes falling incomplete due to an under or overthrown incompletion. Stafford's off-target rate has declined each subsequent quarter this season. Last season, Stafford's quarter-by-quarter rates never exceeded 18.0 percent.
Calvin Johnson is the only Lions player to catch at least 50 percent of his targets from Matthew Stafford more than 10 yards downfield this season. Johnson has one of the Lions' league-high seven drops on such throws.
Matthew Stafford has faced four or fewer rushers on the highest percentage of dropbacks this season (87.9). Stafford faces the Bears Monday, who have used such pressure 79 percent of the time this season, the fifth-highest rate in the NFL.

ESPN Stats & Information