Week 11 Game Recap: Carolina Panthers 3, Chicago Bears 13
What you need to know
Carolina was completely dominated at the line of scrimmage. Jake Delhomme was sacked eight times on the day. The Panthers were only able to manage 55 yards rushing on the day the majority of those yards coming on draw plays on third and long. The Panthers defense was unable to apply any pressure to Kyle Orton going without a sack as the Bears offensive line dominated the front four.
Jake Delhomme was hurried constantly in the pocket and threw many errant passes either on the run or off his back foot. He finished the afternoon 22 of 38 for 235 yards and two costly interceptions. Both interceptions led to Chicago points.
Steve Smith was the only consistent offensive weapon this Sunday as he turned an amazing 19 targets into 14 receptions for 169 yards. A number of his catches were of the short variety but he made a couple of outstanding leaping grabs in double coverage. He is clearly Delhomme’s first, second and third look on many downs.
The Chicago Bears made a statement on Sunday afternoon by dominating the Carolina Panthers on both sides of the ball. Their offensive line kept Kyle Orton clean all day and very rarely was he pressured, while the Bears’ defensive line constantly harassed Jake Delhomme. The Bears now carry a six game winning streak of their own into week twelve’s match up with Tampa Bay.
Kyle Orton was extremely effective. While his final numbers seem modest at 15 of 26 for 136 yards and a touchdown as well as an interception. Three drops by Muhsin Muhammad victimized him and his interception came of a tipped pass.
Thomas Jones was the game’s leading rusher, carrying the ball 25 times for 87 hard fought yards.
Muhsin Muhammad was targeted 11 times and finished with six catches for 49 yards and a touchdown. Muhammad had three drops on the game including a ball that would have gone for his second touchdown on the day.
What you ought to know
|QB Jake Delhomme, Pass: 22 - 38 - 235 - 0 TD / 2 INT, Rush: 2 - 8 - 0|
For the first time in 17 road games Jake Delhomme went without a touchdown pass. He was harassed all day as his left tackle was unable to contain the Bears’ pass rushers were constantly in his face. He finished the day with 235 yards on 22 completions on 38 attempts and two costly interceptions. Both turnovers were converted into Bear points. Of Delhomme’s 38 attempts, 19 of them were in the direction of Steve Smith.
|RB DeShaun Foster, Pass: 0 - 1 - 0 - 0 TD / 0 INT, Rush: 9 - 41 - 0, Rec: 3 - 20 - 0 (5 targets)|
Foster led the Panthers with 41 yards on nine carries. The majority of the yards coming on third and long draw plays. Deshaun did have three catches for 20 yards. He also had another catch for ten yards called back on a holding penalty.
Davis had four carries for a total of six yards as the Chicago Bears’ defensive line spent the afternoon in the Panthers’ backfield.
Goings had one carry for zero yards and was targeted once.
Smith did all he could do to keep the Panthers in this game. Of his 19 targets he caught 14 balls for 169 yards. A number of his catches came on short slants and screen passes at the line of scrimmage that he turned into positive yards. He did have a couple of outstanding grabs leaping into double coverage and pulling the ball in.
Proehl had two catches on the day for 19 yards. He was targeted five times including what looked to be for a touchdown but was denied on an outstanding play by the Bears’ Chris Harris.
Colbert was targeted on the first offensive play from scrimmage by the Panthers and never looked at again.
Gaines finished with two catches for 15 yards. He was targeted four times on the game.
Kasay was one for two on field goal attempts. He missed for the first time all season on an attempt less than 50 yards, missing from 46 yards out. He did convert a 38 yard chance in the fourth quarter.
The Panthers’ rush defense was effective through three quarters but appeared to get worn down in the fourth quarter, as Thomas Jones was able to take time off the clock with some of his more effective runs of the game. Strong safety Marlon McCree led the Panthers in tackles with nine.
The Panthers’ pass defense limited Orton to 136 yards passing on the day but they were unable to establish any pressure on Orton and went without a sack all afternoon. Ricky Manning had Carolina’s lone turnover on an interception off a tipped pass. The Panthers’ defense on the day was solid if not spectacular and the points surrendered were a result of turnovers by the offense.
|QB Kyle Orton, Pass: 15 - 26 - 136 - 1 TD / 1 INT, Rush: 2 - -2 - 0|
Orton was solid on the day making key completions when targets were available. His lone turnover came on a ball thrown behind his receiver, which was tipped into the hands of the Carolina defender. Three drops by Muhsin Muhammad including one that would have gone for his second touchdown on the day also victimized him. Overall he finished 15 of 26 for 136 yards and a touchdown.
Jones ran for 87 hard fought yards on 25 carries. His rib injury seems to be a thing of the past as he took a number of shots from the Carolina defense. Jones showed great patience in looking for the hole and a very good burst into it once it opens. He was targeted only once as often he and the fullback assisted in picking of blocks of the oncoming pass rushers.
Peterson came on to spell Jones on the second series of the second half. He carried the ball four times for 37 yards.
Johnson was very effective picking up Panthers’ blitzes and did contribute two catches for six yards as safety valve in the passing game.
Gage looked like the number two receiver the Bears have expected him to be a number of times over the last two years. He led the Bears with seven catches for 81 yards and an outstanding toe tapping catch on the sidelines. Gage used his size advantage over the smaller Panthers’ corners to shield the ball from them and catch seven of the eight balls thrown his way.
Muhammad posted six receptions for 49 yards and a touchdown versus his former team. But he could have and should have had more. Surprisingly, he had three drops including one that would have gone for his second touchdown on the day.
Wade was used sparingly in three wide sets and was targeted only once.
Clark was targeted only twice on the day and was often kept out of the pass patterns to help provide protection for Kyle Orton.
Gould was perfect on the day converting field goals of 33 and 39 yards and his lone extra point.
The Bears’ front four was completely dominating of the Panthers’ offensive line. Most of the afternoon was spent in the Carolina backfield. They limited the Panthers to 55 yards on 16 carries. The longest run of the day given up was 12 yards on a third and long draw play. Charles Tillman led the Bears in tackles with nine.
The Bears allowed Steve Smith to make his catches but kept him and the rest of the Panthers out of the end zone. The front four put constant pressure on Delhomme sacking him eight times and forcing two interceptions leading to ten points. Adewale Ogunleye had three of the sacks and Alex Brown two of them on Jake Delhomme. Last weeks return hero Nathan Vasher turned two interceptions over to the offense leading to ten points.