Banished to the Box

Chicago - Defensive coordinator Ron Rivera moved up to the coaches' box for the game, and the defense allowed a season's best 162 total net yards.

"We really wanted Ron to get away from the action down there so he could really kind of concentrate on making the calls from up there,'' coach Lovie Smith said. ""He's been doing a good job and of course he did a great job tonight.''

Rivera noticed a difference.

"I found as I was charting I found a certain rhythm,'' Rivera said. ""It really helped out. It really did.

"When I was at Philadelphia as the linebackers coach I was up in the box and I was charting and I kind of thought, there may be something to it and it really worked out well.''

Rivera said when he got photos of offensive alignments, it was easier to study them during the game from the press box.

"When you can put it on the desk and kind of look at things, I think honestly it made it a lot easier,'' Rivera said.

VASHER THE DASHER
Nate Vasher's fourth quarter interception return for a 71-yard clinching touchdown may have been the result of a halftime adjustment.

"We were in Cover-2 (zone) and it gives me the opportunity to see the ball and make a play at it,'' Vasher said. ""It was an adjustment we made at halftime with the guys running slant patterns.

"We just played our leverage and finished on the play. That was the big thing.''

Vasher had to sweat out whether or not he had been called down on the play because his knee had touched. Officials ruled he bobbled the ball while the knee was on the ground, then got control after he was down.

"My heart stopped,'' he said of the replay review. ""But I was glad they got it right.''

BERRIAN'S FIRST
Bernard Berrian's 49-yard touchdown catch in the first quarter was not only his first TD in the NFL but the team's first TD catch by a wide receiver this year.

"Coach Shea is trying to open the offense,'' Berrian said. ""I was just hoping the ball was going to be in there.

"We worked on it all week in practice. We landed on it about three times in practice.''

Berrian came in with only four catches for 32 yards.

"It's been frustrating, it's been a little frustrating, but I think that's a part of the game (as a rookie). You can't cry about it,'' Berrian said.

INJURY REPORT
Running back Thomas Jones left in the early first quarter with a sprained foot. He returned to the sidelines after having the foot examined in the trainer's room, but was unable to return.

Guard Rex Tucker had to leave the game late with an unknown injury.

Jones had suffered a quad muscle strain the previous game against Tampa Bay.

49ers safety Tony Parrish, a former Bear, suffered an eye injury in the second quarter.


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