Bears Embarrassed By A.D.'s First Showing

The Chicago Bears have had a hard time forgetting Adrian Peterson's breakout rushing performance against them in their first meeting with the Vikings. See what the Bears are saying about Peterson now.

Forget the film, the numbers alone from the Bears' last meeting with the Vikings are embarrassing enough — at least for the defense.

Adrian Peterson rushed for 224 yards, more than any player has ever run for against the Bears. The Vikings' 311 yards on the ground were the third-most allowed in franchise history.

"I don't know if he just caught us off guard, but he was better than us," Bears cornerback Charles Tillman said. "That's all it was. That day he was better than us. I tip my hat to him because he ran through our defense, and that's something that we don't take kindly to. We have pride, and that's one of the things that we definitely pride ourselves on, is run defense."

Tough to forget?

"It's not easy at all because we were embarrassed," defensive end Adewale Ogunleye said. "He's a rookie, and you never want a rookie to run (for) as much as he did on us."

The 5-8 Bears get a shot at redemption Monday night at the Metrodome, but their prospects for improvement aren't encouraging. Last week they lost starting nose tackle Anthony Adams and backup tackle Antonio Garay. Starting tackle Tommie Harris is still playing hurt, and sometimes starter Darwin Walker might not even suit up in Minnesota.
Even though he missed 2 1/2 games with a sprained knee, Peterson has already rushed for 1,200 yards, second most in the league.

"He's fast, he's strong, he has power," Tillman said. "He has all those things in one bag. And he's explosive, too. So we've just got to come with our hard hats and be ready to go to work."

Before being trampled in that Week 6 game, the Bears were No. 12 in run defense; now they're No. 24, although they shut down the Redskins' run game last week, allowing only 31 yards on 24 attempts. The 7-6 Vikings will be a bigger challenge. The NFL's No. 1 ground game has rushed for twice as many yards as the team that "gets off the bus running the football."

"Hopefully as (a) captain of this team, I can get closer to him a little bit," Ogunleye said. "Hopefully we can get together this game and do some things differently than we did last game. He had some big runs last game, and he broke us down. We played him pretty well — I know it's hard to say that when somebody rushes for over 200 yards — but we did. He had a couple of big runs."

It'll take a lot more than Ogunleye to slow down Peterson and the Minnesota run game. The 49ers limited Peterson to three yards on 14 carries, but Chester Taylor rushed for 101 yards on just eight attempts and the Vikings won 27-7.

Taylor's 5.3-yard average per carry is second best in the NFL among players with more than 100 carries, trailing only Peterson's 6.1.

"Both backs are capable of doing the same exact thing if you don't play sound football," Ogunleye said. "So if I'm talking about Adrian this whole week, I'm talking about Chester, too."

The Bears are expected to do a lot of talking about, practicing for and game planning against a Minnesota running attack that has flourished without the benefit of a competent passing game. They're 31st in passing yards, and quarterback Tarvaris Jackson has just six touchdown passes all season and a passer rating of 73.0, which is No. 27 in the league.

SERIES HISTORY: 94th meeting, including playoffs. Vikings lead Bears 49-42-2, including a 34-31 victory in Week 6, when the Bears rallied to score 14 points in 58 seconds late in the fourth quarter, only to lose on Ryan Longwell's career-best 55-yard field goal as time expired. The Bears had won four of five meetings prior to that.

BY THE NUMBERS: 311 — Rushing yards allowed by the Bears in their last meeting with the Vikings, third worst in franchise history. Adrian Peterson's 224 rushing yards were the most the Bears have ever allowed to one player.

QUOTE TO NOTE: "You got three days to sit around and just think about how your season went down the drain (after) hoping that we would have a shot of making it to the playoffs and going back to the Super Bowl. But unfortunately we're not able to go to the playoffs, and right now we're playing for pride." — Devin Hester, on having the weekend off.

NOTES

Starting nose tackle Anthony Adams (triceps) and backup Antonio Garay (ankle) went on injured reserve Monday, and Darwin Walker missed practice Tuesday with an elbow injury.

So, Babatunde Oshinowo, who spent three months on the Bears practice squad, was promoted to the active roster, and the defensive tackle said it was worth the wait.

"All the guys on the practice squad will tell you that's what you work for," he said. "The practice squad is temporary. It's not a permanent fix. You can only be there a certain amount of time, so everybody there is working to get activated, staying ready. Normally toward the end of the season is when you see a lot of guys getting picked up off the practice squad. So I'm very blessed. I'm very excited to have the opportunity."

Oshinowo played in one game with the Browns last season as a rookie.

  • Bears RB Adrian Peterson has averaged 2.4 yards per carry in his last five games, and on 91 carries this season, he has a long gain of 11 yards.

  • WR Mark Bradley tied his season high last week with one catch, giving him four receptions for the season. The four-yard gain last week gave him 37 yards on the year.

  • DT Tommie Harris, who had four sacks in the first five games and seven sacks in the first eight games, has none in his last five games.

  • DT Darwin Walker, who is due a roster bonus in March, has one sack this season, has missed two games and had one tackle in four others. He is questionable at best this week with an elbow injury.

  • LB Brendon Ayanbadejo, a Pro Bowl special teams player last season when he had 28 tackles, has 23 special-teams tackles so far this season.


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