Turning Point: Bears Execute in Extra Session

The Bears failed to hold a 10-point lead against the Lions, but came up with the plays in overtime to win. While Charles Tillman will get most of the attention for the victory, Cedric Benson deserves a share of the credit.

Momentum seemed to be with the Lions, even though the Bear defense forcing a three and out to start the extra session. A holding call against Carl Ford coupled with a minus 6-yard punt return by Bobby Wade pinned the offense at their 13.

Cedric Benson hadn't carried the ball during regulation, but made the most of three carries on this drive. He took his first touch to the outside for a 7-yard gain. On a similar call on second down, Benson broke into the secondary for his longest rush of the year. A 25-yard burst brought the Bears near midfield. The rookie took his third consecutive carry for three yards.

With all eyes on Benson, Kyle Orton used him as a decoy on play action and found Muhsin Muhammad wide open. Unfortunately, Orton overshot his intended target. Orton again misfired to Muhammad on third down and the Bears were forced to punt.

Despite not putting any points on the board, Benson's three carries for 35 yards gave Brad Maynard a chance to punt in a favorable position. He struggled to get the ball to turnover on his kicks all day because of a calf strain. In this case it worked to his advantage, as his 39-yard punt was just what was needed in the situation.

Like the Bears, the Lions started their drive on the13. RB Kevin Jones was stopped on a first down carry for no gain. Jeff Garcia felt the rush on second down and scrambled for a five-yard gain. When pressured on third down, Garcia bought time with his feet and then thought he saw WR Mike Williams open just past the first down marker. His soft toss gave Charles Tillman enough time to break in front of Williams and pick off the pass with a clear path to the end zone.

Tillman has bounced back strong after giving up four touchdowns in a span of three games. He's now tied with Nathan Vasher for the team lead with three interceptions and scored his first career touchdown.

Benson has been the forgotten man since the first meeting with Detroit, when he carried 16 times for 49 yards. Since then he's touched the ball 10 times for 14 yards.

Without Jones in the game, the Lions didn't respect the run and tried to put pressure on Orton to win the game. In the end, the defense bailed the team out with a big play, but at the same time Benson's performance helped turn things around and could do serve as a boost for his confidence as the second half of the season approaches.


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