Bears 10

(4-7, 1-5 away)

Vikings 36

(10-1, 6-0 home)

Coverage: FOX

4:15 PM ET, November 29, 2009

Mall of America Field, Minneapolis, MN 

1 2 3 4 T
CHI 0 7 3 010
MIN 0 24 3 936

Top Performers

Passing: B. Favre (MIN) - 392 YDS, 3 TD

Rushing: A. Peterson (MIN) - 25 CAR, 85 YDS, 1 TD

Receiving: P. Harvin (MIN) - 6 REC, 101 YDS, 1 TD

Vikings run up 36 points, 537 yards in blitzing slumping Bears

Associated Press

MINNEAPOLIS -- Minnesota's recruiting pitch to Brett Favre was heavy on the no-pressure part: just steady the offense, let the running game and defense do most of the work, and join in the fun.

The Vikings are enjoying themselves, but Favre's surgically repaired right arm is doing a whole lot of work.

Favre completed 32 of 48 passes for a season-high 392 yards and three touchdowns, and the Vikings intercepted Jay Cutler twice in a 36-10 victory over the Chicago Bears on Sunday.

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"I figured we'd have to throw it some," Favre said. "I didn't come just to hand it off. I love to play."

But the 40-year-old has been surprised by how much he's been heaving the ball. The Bears were blitzing and playing a soft zone coverage a lot in the first half to bottle up Adrian Peterson, so coach Brad Childress ordered offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell to keep calling for passes.

Fine by Favre, even if it's more than he expected. Left guard Steve Hutchinson, one of several players who tried to sell Favre on coming to Minnesota, teased him on the sideline about his you-won't-have-to-do-too-much pitch.

"It's not like I wake up in the morning and don't have any aches and pains, because I do," said Favre, who matched former Vikings defensive lineman Jim Marshall for the NFL non-kicker record of 282 straight games played. "I'm sure when it's all said and done, I'm going to be like, 'What did I do all this for?' But my arm feels great."

The Vikings (10-1) outgained the Bears by a whopping 537 yards to 169 and breezed to their fifth straight win, despite two more fumbles and a pedestrian 85 yards on 25 carries by Peterson, whose short, late touchdown run put Minnesota over 32 points for the sixth time this season. The Vikings had 31 first downs, the Bears just eight.

"I think pride is going to become an issue here," Bears defensive end Alex Brown said. "It's going to be heart, pride and who really enjoys playing the game of football."

Favre's big day

Brett Favre threw for 392 yards Sunday -- and five receivers had more than five catches, the second time that's happened this season. Favre's four biggest passing days:

When Yds. Opponent
Dec. '93 402 at Bears
Dec. '03 399 at Raiders
Oct. '96 395 vs 49ers
Nov. '09 392 vs Bears

In the second half, the Bears ran 12 plays -- and netted 2 yards.

"It's a tough one," said Cutler, who completed 18 of 23 passes for 147 yards and one touchdown. "I didn't expect this. We had a good week."

He added: "With as good a football team that I think we have in here, to go out week after week and not live up to our own expectations, that's the tough part."

Cutler was precise in the short passing game and effective in the no-huddle, keeping the Bears (4-7) in it until late in the second quarter. He was picked off by a diving Cedric Griffin in the end zone. Then on the next possession, E.J. Henderson got his hand on a ball over the middle that Jared Allen jumped up and caught with 57 seconds left in the half.

Favre drove the Vikings 70 yards for a 24-7 advantage, and Ryan Longwell kicked two of his three field goals after halftime to further stretch the lead.

Cutler came to Chicago as the long-sought strong-armed quarterback that has been missing there for decades, but the Bears don't have nearly as talented of a supporting cast as Favre does in Minnesota. Cutler reached his career high with 20 interceptions, 15 of those coming in the last seven games, with the Bears losing six.

"I'll be honest. That was the most poised I've ever seen him playing against him," said Allen, who had two of the four second-half sacks of Cutler. "Sometimes he can get frustrated, but like I said they had a couple drives where they ... were making a few plays."

When the Vikings finally persuaded Favre to keep playing and join his former NFC North rivals, they added what was widely viewed as their missing piece for championship contention. That's exactly the way it has been working out for them.

"We want to be ascending and continue to climb," Childress said.

Five players caught five passes or more for the Vikings, with rookie Percy Harvin totaling 101 yards, plus 45 yards rushing on two end-arounds. Favre keeps putting needle-eye passes in traffic to Harvin, tight end Visanthe Shiancoe and wide receivers Sidney Rice and Bernard Berrian, and they keep coming down with the ball.

"I think people are starting to look at our receivers like they do at Adrian Peterson as a force to be reckoned with," Favre said.

Hunter Hillenmeyer forced both of Peterson's fumbles. He has lost five this year, and in 41 career games he has fumbled 19 times and lost 12. A replay review overturned Chicago's recovery of the second fumble, when officials ruled Hillenmeyer was out of bounds.

Game notes

Coach Lovie Smith announced several injuries for the Bears: LB Lance Briggs (knee), CB Charles Tillman (head), LT Orlando Pace (groin) and Brown (leg). Briggs was hurt in the first quarter, returned briefly and then aggravated the injury. ... The Vikings added all-time tackles leader Scott Studwell, now their director of college scouting, to their "Ring of Honor" in a halftime ceremony. ... Cutler had 18 interceptions last season for Denver and 14 the year before with the Broncos.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


Team Stat Comparison

1st Downs831
Passing 1st downs
Rushing 1st downs
1st downs from Penalties
3rd down efficiency
4th down efficiency
Total Plays3883
Total Yards169537
Yards per play4.46.5
Total Drives1011
Comp - Att
Yards per pass
Interceptions thrown
Sacks - Yards Lost
Rushing Attempts
Yards per rush
Red Zone (Made-Att)0-14-6
Fumbles lost
Interceptions thrown
Defensive / Special Teams TDs00

Passing Leaders


Rushing Leaders


Receiving Leaders


Scoring Summary

minTD14:56Percy Harvin 15 Yd Pass From Brett Favre (Ryan Longwell Kick) 07
chiTD12:12Johnny Knox 24 Yd Pass From Jay Cutler (Robbie Gould Kick) 77
minTD08:06Chester Taylor 10 Yd Pass From Brett Favre (Ryan Longwell Kick) 714
minFG07:02Ryan Longwell 52 Yd 717
minTD00:17Visanthe Shiancoe 6 Yd Pass From Brett Favre (Ryan Longwell Kick) 724
chiFG12:44Robbie Gould 38 Yd 1024
minFG07:45Ryan Longwell 37 Yd 1027
minFG13:36Ryan Longwell 20 Yd 1030
minTD06:35Adrian Peterson 5 Yd Run (Two-Point Run Conversion Failed) 1036