Receivers: Marty Booker (10/157) put up huge numbers, especially grabbing passes up the sidelines in the early going. He also took some huge shots over the middle, shook them off and returned. He could have had a better day, dropping a deep pass up the left sideline from Chandler. He also was flagged for offensive pass interference. Dez White (8/106, TD) really stepped up. When he didn't drag a foot to stay in bounds on a nice over the shoulder catch it appeared he was going to have another poor game. But his snatching the ball out of the air for the touchdown was huge, and he had several other big catches for medium range that were crucial down the stretch. He easily had the finest game of his Bear career. Marcus Robinson's only reception counted for 6 points from 3 yards out. He was flagged for an illegal block when the Bears were in the red zone. Ahmad Merritt (3/24) made some nice catches and moves, but committed a costly turnover when he fumbled the ball. Tight end John Davis dropped a big 4th down pass and then left with an injury. He also allowed a sack to safety Bracy Walker. Dustin Lyman showed some signs of improvement, hauling in 3 passes for 25 yards. He was a target on at least 5 plays. The fumble and drops hurt what could have been some early momentum, but the group turned up big when it mattered most.
Running Backs: Anthony Thomas (14-40, 1/11) had a couple of strong runs in tight situations, but also missed a few cutbacks. He's still missing something. Perhaps he needs to limit his cuts to one per play. He took a short swing pass and ran powerfully for 11 yards up the left sideline. Thomas also fumbled a stacked up sweep out of bounds. Leon Johnson (9-34, 3/27) saw extended time. He's getting a regular rotation of carries, as well as more usage in passing situations. Johnson's recovery of Miller's fumble from center should not be overlooked. He made a one-handed grab of a pass under pressure for a nice gain. In overtime, he allowed a defender to miss him in the backfield and then spun for a 15-yard gain that kept the drive alive. Damion Shelton had a solid game as a lead blocker. Stanley Pritchett took a short pass in the ear hole for an incompletion on 2nd and 8 in overtime. The backs could have played a little better, but didn't turn the ball over and prevented a potential turnover late.
Offensive Line: Through 51 passing attempts, the Bears allowed 3 sacks. Considering how the sacks came, and the health of the offensive line, this was a strong effort. Protection was reasonably good from Gandy at left tackle, a new spot for him. Dogins struggled a bit on the pass against Rogers. He allowed some big pressure there, even on the short drops. Villarrial committed a false start. Kreutz had a better game than his earlier performances. Williams got injured late in the game, and was replaced by Bernard Robertson. Neither performed badly, and thankfully neither committed any penalties. Run blocking appears to be a bit shoddy, but it's been harder to judge since Thomas has not made the same one-cut decisions he made a season ago. Johnson appeared to make a few, but he was just short of making it to the open perimeter. Overall, this was a good game for the line, overcoming a lot of adversity.