Forte today played in what was likely his last game with the Chicago Bears. He ran the ball 17 times for 76 yards (4.5 ypc) and added 3 catches for 34 yards, including a 23-yard touchdown. It was the 7th time this season he has finished with 100 or more yards from scrimmage. In 12 games this season, Forte carried 201 times for 822 rushing yards and 4 TDs, to go along with 41 receptions for 355 receiving yards and 2 TDs.
Bellamy has done very little this season, despite plenty of playing time due to numerous injuries to the receiving corps. Yet today, Bellamy finally showed up, catching 3 passes for 49 yards and an impressive 34-yard touchdown grab.
There are a number of silver linings to an overall disappointing season, not the least of which is Mariani, who continues to make play after play for Chicago's passing attack. With Alshon Jeffery on IR and Zach Miller inactive, Mariani carried the passing attack, finishing with 6 receptions on 8 targets for 80 yards, all of which were team highs. Of his six catches, four went for first downs, because that's all Mariani does is move the chains. He also had a 47-yard kickoff return in the fourth quarter.
Houston had 3 tackles, 1 tackle for loss and a sack against the Lions. He finished the year with a team-leading 6.0 sacks, which matches his career high. Most impressive about Houston's season is that almost all of his production came in the second half of the season. He didn't pick up his first sack until Week 9 and he's been nearly unstoppable since.
The Bears signed Scruggs off the street this week and he had an immediate impact. finishing with three tackles and a sack. Scruggs was also important in helping keep Detroit to just 67 total rushing yards.
Cutler had gone the entire season without throwing more than one interception in any single contest. Today, he threw three picks. He finished with 245 passing yards and 2 TDs, but Cutler's turnovers were the difference in the contest.
Cutler's final two interceptions were the result of him being hit from the blindside by players Leno should have been blocking. He had a rough outing and could not handle Lions DE Ziggy Ansah. Leno has been fairly steady this season but he faded down the stretch and today was one of his worst games. Going into the off-season, the Bears will have a big decision to make about Leno as the club's left tackle of the future.
Jones was absolutely torched by the Lions running backs and tight ends today. He especially struggled with Louis Riddick, who caught four passes for 29 yards. As a result, Jones was benched late in the game for Jonathan Anderson, who took over on passing downs. Jones has been very inconsistent this year and has not developed at the inside linebacker position. The Bears might be better off letting him rush off the edge next season, as he did his senior year at Florida State.
Porter was having a decent game until Calvin Johnson torched him for a 36-yard touchdown in the third quarter. It was downhll from there, as Jonson finshed with 10 catches for 137 yards. Johnson only had two 100-yard receiving games this season and both came against the Bears.
The Bears made Forte the focal point of this contest, which left Langford on the outside looking in. He finished with just five carries for 14 yards (2.8 ypc) and no receptions. His five total touches were his fewest since Week 5. Langford is the future of Chicago's backfield but he was invisible this afternoon.