Report Card vs. Raiders

While not everything was perfect against Oakland, the Bears seem to be headed in the right direction.

C -- The numbers aren't pretty, but Kordell Stewart produced in crunch time with a 14-yard, fourth-quarter TD pass to Marty Booker (four catches, season-best 94 yards) and a 29-yarder to Dez White with nine seconds remaining that set up the winning field goal.

A -- Anthony Thomas (123 yards on 22 carries) looks better than ever, and the offensive line destroyed the Raiders along the line of scrimmage. QB Kordell Stewart provided his usual aid to the ground game with 52 yards on nine carries, and he also ran for a 2-point conversion.

A-minus -- Although they only got one sack, Raiders QB Rich Gannon was hurried into several poor throws, and the Bears picked off two passes, doubling their season total. Hall-of-Famers to be Jerry Rice and Tim Brown combined for a modest 90 yards on five receptions, even though rookie Charles Tillman was starting his first game at cornerback. R.W. McQuarters' interception and 43-yard return set up a touchdown in the fourth quarter.

C-minus -- The defense had trouble with Charlie Garner (92 yards on 15 carries), but the total yield of 123 yards was by far its best of the season. DT Keith Traylor (arthroscopic knee surgery) was hardly missed as unheralded and inconsistent Alfonso Boone stepped up big.

A -- Paul Edinger hit field goals from 35, 50 and 48 yards as time expired and is now 8-for-8 on the season. R.W. McQuarters had a 54-yard punt return that set up a field goal, and Jerry Azumah averaged 25.2 yards on five kickoff returns, a big improvement over Ahmad Merritt, who he replaced.

B -- The defense played its best game of the season with rookies Charles Tillman at cornerback and Lance Briggs at strong-side linebacker making their first starts. The return game is much better since R.W. McQuarters replaced rookie Bobby Wade on punts and with Jerry Azumah taking over for Ahmad Merritt on kickoffs. The Bears finally they got the ball to WR Marty Booker with room to run and figured out that Anthony Thomas running the ball is their best offensive weapon.

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