The Bears passing game lives up to the hype in week one: After a very rocky start in the first quarter (where he started off 1/10), Jay Cutler rebounded strong, finishing the game 21/35 for 335 yards and two touchdowns. I would mainly chalk up the early struggles to a QB going up against an unknown in the Colts 3-4 defense, and simply putting too much pressure on himself to put on a good performance.
Once Cutler settled down, he was able to hit 6 different receivers with Brandon Marshall making his presence felt the most; going for nine catches, 119 yards, and a TD.
The highlight of the passing attack came late in the fourth, where Cutler connected with Alshon Jeffery on a beautiful 42 yard bomb off play action. It showed the rest of the league what the Bears offense is capable of when opposing secondaries want to roll coverage to Marshall’s side.
The defensive front-four of the Bears generated pressure throughout the game: Henry Melton managed to tally two sacks in the game and Corey Wootton had a sack and strip fumble. In addition to that, the Bears D-Line managed to keep rookie quarterback Andrew Luck under duress throughout the game.
Defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli played with a couple looks throughout the game; one of significance being the Dan Ryan package, where they shift Julius Peppers inside at DT for Melton who rushed from the outside at DE. They even got some pressures from rookie DE Shea McClellin while in their Nickel Rush package.
The Bears got contributions all around and if they can keep it up, it just gives an opportunistic secondary an increased number of chances to create turnovers.
Game balls to an offensive and defensive player: On offense, J’Marcus Webb had a pretty decent game in both pass protection and run blocking. Although he didn’t face Dwight Freeney throughout the day, he hardly allowed pressure from his side, and excelled in his run-blocking assignments.
On defense, Tim Jennings looked like the best defensive back on the team. Jennings performed well in man and zone coverage, and showed he has the potential to be a ball-hawking corner with two acrobatic INT’s and some great pass deflections.
Overall analysis on the game: I thought the Bears did a great job taking care of business against a Colts team that is clearly in re-building mode. Most of the young players should gain a lot of confidence from this win heading into the primetime game on Thursday night against the Green Bay Packers.