JC's Live Blog: Bears vs. Cowboys

Be sure to refresh this live blog every now and then for all the goings on Sunday night at Soldier Field in Chicago. From the field to the sideline to the press box, JC will make you feel like you're a part of the game.

6:18 p.m.
Greetings, Bears fans. Everybody loves prime time football, although I'm happy to be in the press box and not watching at home tonight. If you ask me, the NBC broadcast is just unwatchable because they hype it up and dramatize the game to death. This will be a serious test for the boys from the Windy City because I really think this Dallas team is for real. The offense is running on all cylinders very early in the season, and I believe their defense will play better – possibly as soon as tonight ...

6:29 p.m.
Inactive tonight for the Bears are P Dirk Johnson, CB Corey Graham, FB Lousaka Polite, OG Josh Beekman, LB Darrell McClover, WR Mike Hass, and DT Antonio Garay. Kyle Orton will serve as the third quarterback. As for the Cowboys, CB Evan Oglesby, S Courtney Brown, FB Oliver Hoyte, OT Doug Free, OT James Marten, WR Terry Glenn, WR Isaiah Stanback, and LB Greg Ellis will sit this one out. Johnson inactive means Brad Maynard's groin is feeling good enough to play, although you can bet Robbie Gould has been doing a little punting in practice this week just in case Maynard can't finish the game ...

7:22 p.m.
The Bears have won the toss and elected to receive ...

7:24 p.m.
K Nick Folk tries the pooch kickoff, but his attempt goes out of bounds. Rex Grossman and the offense take over at their own 40-yard line. Devin Hester has already had an effect on this game without even touching the ball, but the Cowboys have shown that they are more than happy to give away some field position in order to take away the lightning-strike score. Cedric Benson gets 18 yards on his first two carries of the night, but Bernard Berrian drops a bullet from Grossman on the right side that would have put the Bears in position for a field goal. Instead, Maynard's punt bounces into the end zone for a Dallas touchback ...

7:32 p.m.
Mark Anderson sacks Tony Romo on the Cowboys' first snap on offense, putting them at a serious down-and-distance disadvantage. Terrell Owens makes a 17-yard catch on 3rd-and-18, but it's interesting to note that Charles Tillman was in coverage on the right side of the defense. Tillman usually lines up on the left side, which tells me that he'll have Owens one-on-one all night long like he did against Plaxico Burress in Week 10 last season ...

7:45 p.m.
Grossman puts together a great-looking drive, but it sputters on 3rd-and-goal at the 3-yard line. Gould comes on for the chip-shot 20-yarder to open the scoring, 3-0 Bears. That was a 74-yard drive on 15 plays in 7:28, all very impressive numbers ...

7:54 p.m.
After Gould inexplicably boots the ensuing kickoff out of bounds, Dallas takes over at the 40-yard line. Anderson is already in the head of LT Flozell Adams, who gets whistled for back-to-back false starts on second down. On 3rd-and-15, Romo's passes is intercepted by Adam Archuleta after deflecting off the hands of Patrick Crayton. Great field position for the Bears, the Dallas 48. Soldier Field is feeling it right about now ...

7:56 p.m.
That's the end of the first quarter, 3-0 Bears leading and on the move again ...

7:59 p.m.
After a feel-good first quarter, Grossman's primary pass of the second stanza is intercepted by CB Anthony Henry and returned 23 yards to the Dallas 34 ...

8:03 p.m.
The Cowboys are forced to punt after Jason Witten is called for an illegal block on Lance Briggs, but replay clearly showed that it was a clean play. Hester fumbles Mat McBriar's punt and is fortunate to get it back for no gain. Grossman was throwing some gorgeous passes before that interception, so let's see if he can recover and get his confidence back ...

8:07 p.m.
Three-and-out for the Bears offense, and Benson has slowed down significantly after a fast start to the game ...

8:15 p.m.
Romo hits Witten with a pair of perfect touch passes for a total of 56 yards, but the Bears defense clamps down in the red zone. Folk splits the uprights from 30 yards to tie the score 3-3. There was another awful penalty called on Dallas, this one a ticky-tack pass interference on Owens ...

8:22 p.m.
Ugly drive by the Bears right there. Desmond Clark is guilty of holding to put the offense in an immediate hole, and then DeMarcus Ware gets around John Tait way too easily for a sack of Grossman. After a Maynard punt deep in his own territory, Dallas takes over at the Chicago 47 ...

8:26 p.m.
Brian Urlacher unloads on Romo for his second sack in two games, which is news considering he went almost a year and a half without a sack before last week. Romo and Co. decide to go for it on 4th-and-3 from the Chicago 40, and they convert with a drag pattern over the middle to Owens. Danieal Manning looked very confused before the snap, so the Bears would have been wise to call a timeout there and get themselves together. Crayton eventually drops a gimme touchdown pass on third down, and then Israel Idonije miraculously blocks a field goal attempt for the second time in two weeks. Archuleta returns the block 46 yards and gives the Bears great field position in Dallas territory with about two minutes to go in the half ...

8:38 p.m.
Berrian drops a sure touchdown on a perfect stop-and-go pattern that everyone will forget about when criticizing Grossman on Monday. Gould lines up for a 53-yarder, but it's a fake as he sprints right and lofts a pass downfield for Clark. However, the ball falls to the turf, and Dallas takes over with a little over a minute left before halftime ...

8:47 p.m.
Grossman tries for a hail-mary pass on the last play of the half, but he's sacked by Ware blazing around the right end for a 14-yard loss. Yikes. Now that was ugly ...

9:07 p.m.
Jamar Williams takes over for Briggs, who's out of the game with a groin injury ...

9:10 p.m.
Touchdown Cowboys, as Romo hits Witten on a 3-yard strike. Romo picked up five first downs on that drive, all through the air. He's thrown for 220 yards already and looks awfully comfortable both in and out of the pocket right now ...

9:19 p.m.
Grossman comes back with a vengeance, finding Clark over them middle for 52 yards and then Greg Olsen one play later for 21 more yards. That's the beauty of having two tight ends that can do some damage in the open field. Benson does the rest from one yard out, tying the score 10-10 with 7:14 left in the third quarter. That six-play drive only took three minutes and covered 86 yards. Pretty impressive considering the crowd was booing Grossman after his first pass of the series fell incomplete ...

9:31 p.m.
Now Nathan Vasher is out of the game, a groin injury for him ...

9:36 p.m.
Touchdown Cowboys as TD-machine Marion Barber finds the end zone on a swing pass from Romo. The Dallas QB is over 300 yards passing already with 1:18 left in the third quarter. After Folk's extra point, it's 17-10 in favor of Big D ...

9:39 p.m.
Shortly thereafter, Benson puts the ball on the ground yet again. He didn't lose a fumble all last season until Super Bowl XLI, but now he's coughed up three in his last four contests. Head coach Lovie Smith will challenge the call, however, there isn't enough evidence to reverse it and Dallas takes over at the Chicago 45 ...

9:44 p.m.
That's the end of the third quarter, and Romo has the Cowboys moving once again after starting the drive with a 14-yard completion to Julius Jones ...

9:53 p.m.
A few more penalties kill that Dallas drive, but Folk is able to boot a 44-yard field goal to extend the lead to double digits. It's now 20-10 Cowboys with 12:10 remaining in the game. Grossman better put something together in a hurry if the Bears plan on winning this ballgame ...

9:56 p.m.
Game over, Bears fans. Grossman forces one to Muhsin Muhammad in triple coverage, but it's picked off by Henry and returned 28 yards for what should be a coffin-closing score. 27-20 Dallas just like that. An absolutely awful decision by Grossman, and the boos are starting to get louder. He'll get booed again once he takes the field here shortly ...

10:09 p.m.
Grossman completes a few passes on the drive, but he's sacked yet again as the Dallas rushers can simply pin their ears back right about now. There is an awfully ominous feeling at Soldier Field as I type these words, especially with Ruben Brown now out of the game and adding to the list of carnage this evening. Brown, Briggs, and Vasher have combined for 12 Pro Bowl appearances, yet they've all left with injuries ...

10:20 p.m.
Touchdown Cowboys as Barber scores yet again from a yard away. That's a 78-yard drive in eight plays, all on the ground and highlighted by a 54-yard effort from Barber. It's 34-10 Dallas, and now it's just been announced in the press box that Tommie Harris is out of the game with a knee injury ...

10:22 p.m.
Grossman throws his third pick of the game on the very first play of the ensuing drive, meaning the Brian Griese watch has officially begun in Chicago ...

10:30 p.m.
And that's the ballgame, a serious punch to the stomach that will have Bears fans wondering if their team can make it back to the playoffs let alone back to the Super Bowl ...

Be sure to visit BearReport.com for all the analysis, all the insight, and all the latest from Chicago as the Bears need to go back to the drawing board at 1-2 on the season.

John Crist is the Editor in Chief of BearReport.com and a member of the Professional Football Writers of America. To read him every day, visit BearReport.com and become a Chicago Bears insider.

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