BEARS IMPROVE TO 6-1
The Chicago Bears improved to 6-1 after defeating the Carolina Panthers 23-22 on Sunday. Since the NFL-AFL merger in 1970, this is the eighth time the Bears have started a season 6-1 or better. In the previous seven times, the Bears made the playoffs that season (2006, 2001, 1990, 1988, 1987, 1986 and 1985).
The last time the Bears had a 6-1 or better record after their first six contests was 2006 (7-0).
GOULD HITS GAME-WINNER AS TIME EXPIRES
With the Bears trailing 22-20 with four seconds remaining, K Robbie Gould connected on a game-winning 41-yard field goal to give the Bears a 23-22 victory.
It was the tenth game-winning field goal in the fourth quarter or overtime of Gould's career (including postseason) and the first since September 27, 2010 versus Green Bay (19-yarder with 3:59 left in 20-17 victory).
Gould is now 13-of-15 (.867) on the season in field goal attempts.
During his career in the regular and postseason, Gould is 53-for-65 (.815) in field goal attempts in the fourth quarter and overtime.
JENNINGS RECORDS PICK SIX, TWO INTERCEPTIONS
For the sixth time in the last five games Chicago's defense returned an interception for a touchdown when Bears CB Tim Jennings picked off Carolina QB Cam Newton and returned it 25 yards for a score. The six interception return touchdowns are a single-season franchise record, breaking a tie with the 2004 team. The six interception return touchdowns are also the most by any team through their first seven games in NFL history.
The Bears are now 22-5 (.815) in contests in which they score a defensive touchdown since 2004, including 19-2 (.905) since 2005.
Jennings also had a pick in the second quarter for his second multiple-interception of the season (Week 1 vs. IND) and career.
He entered Week 8 action tied for the NFL lead in interceptions with four, already a career-high. The six interceptions are the most in a season by a Bears player since CB Zack Bowman had six in 2009.
Nine of Jennings' 13 career interceptions have come in his three season with the Bears (2010-12) after spending his first four years with Indianapolis (2006-09).
CUTLER HELPS LEAD 4TH QUARTER COMEBACK
With the Bears trailing 19-7 entering the fourth quarter, QB Jay Cutler helped Chicago to a 23-22 comeback win. It is the 13th fourth-quarter comeback of Cutler's career and his sixth as a member of the Bears (his first since November 7, 2011 at Philadelphia).
During the fourth quarter versus Carolina, Cutler was 12-of-14 passing for 106 yards and a touchdown for a 122.0 passer rating.
Including games in which the score was tied in the fourth quarter, today was the 17th fourth-quarter game-winning drive of Cutler's NFL career.
DAVIS HAULS IN 12-YARD TOUCHDOWN
Bears TE Kellen Davis, hauled in his only reception of the game for a 12-yard touchdown, his second TD catch of the season. Davis now has 11 career touchdown receptions, fifth most in franchise history among tight ends, breaking a tie with Keith Jennings. Davis' 11 touchdown receptions have come on 38 career catches (3.45 catches/touchdown).
FORTE HAS RUSHING TD
Bears RB Matt Forte carried the ball 15 times for 70 yards (4.7 ypc), including a 13-yard touchdown run in the first quarter versus Carolina.
The rushing touchdown was the 23rd of Forte's career, breaking a tie with Thomas Jones and George McAfee for eighth most in franchise history.
For the season, Forte has 95 carries for 436 yards and two touchdowns, including 273 yards on 59 carries (4.6 ypc) over the last three contests.
PEPPERS RECORDS 2 SACKS
Bears DE Julius Peppers recorded two sacks in the first half of Sunday's contest versus Carolina; Peppers also hurried Panthers QB Cam Newton on Tim Jennings' first interception of the contest in the second quarter.
Peppers now has 5.5 sacks on the season and 105.5 for his career. It was the second multiple-sack game of the season for Peppers (2 at Green Bay) and the 23rd of his career.
He entered this weekend's played tied for third in the NFL in sacks since entering the league in 2002. It was Peppers' first sack against his former club (2002-09) as he now has a sack against 26 of the 32 NFL teams during the regular season. The six teams he does not have a sack against are Chicago (2 games played), Cincinnati (1), Houston (2), Indianapolis (3), Pittsburgh (1) and San Diego (3).
MARSHALL HAULS IN NINE RECEPTIONS FOR 98 YARDS
Bears WR Brandon Marshall hauled in nine receptions for 98 yards on Sunday versus Carolina and now has 50 receptions for 675 yards (13.5 ypc) and four touchdowns in seven contests.
The 675 yards receiving are the most by a Bears player through his first seven games since at least 1960 and the 50 receptions are second most (Johnny Morris, 51 in 1964).
In the Bears two offensive scoring drives in the fourth quarter, Marshall had five receptions for 47 yards including four catches for 36 yards during the game-winning drive.
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