Chicago 41, Indianapolis 21
When: 1:00 PM ET, Sunday, September 9, 2012
Where: Soldier Field, Chicago, Illinois
Bears 41, Colts 21: Jay Cutler threw two touchdown passes - including one to offseason acquisition Brandon Marshall - as host Chicago spoiled the NFL debut of top overall pick Andrew Luck.
Matt Forte rushed for 80 yards and scored from six yards out in his first game since signing a four-year, $31.5 million contract in the offseason. Michael Bush converted a pair of 1-yard scores for the Bears (1-0), who claimed their 53rd season-opening victory to move past Green Bay for the most in NFL history. The Packers host the San Francisco 49ers later on Sunday.
Cutler stumbled out the blocks in his first regular-season game since last campaign was cut short by a broken right thumb. After completing one of his first 10 passes and tossing an interception to linebacker Jerrell Freeman for a touchdown, Cutler quickly righted the ship. He completed 14 of his next 16 passes and finished 21-for-35 for 333 yards.
Cutler and Marshall gave the Bears a 14-7 advantage after they capped an 11-play, 95-yard drive by connecting on a 3-yard hitch at the goal line with 4:23 expired in the second quarter.
After hooking up with Marshall on nine occasions for 119 yards, Cutler connected with rookie Alshon Jeffery for a beautiful 42-yard touchdown pass midway through the fourth quarter to cap the scoring.
While Cutler heated up, Luck simply couldn't get it in gear until late in the second half. The former Stanford quarterback completed 23 of 45 passes for 309 yards with three interceptions - including one in the end zone by safety Chris Conte. Luck, who also fumbled late in the third quarter, tossed a 4-yard touchdown pass to Donnie Avery to cut Chicago's lead to 34-21.
Donald Brown took advantage of a delayed draw by rushing 18 yards for a touchdown late in the second quarter for the Colts (0-1), who committed five turnovers in coach Chuck Pagano's coaching debut.
Indianapolis linebacker Dwight Freeney exited the contest in the first quarter after injuring his left ankle. He did not return.
GAME NOTEBOOK: Eight-time Pro Bowl LB Brian Urlacher returned to the field just under four weeks after having arthroscopic surgery on his left knee. He made his 169th start in a Bears uniform, tying him with Keith Van Horne for fourth place in franchise history. ... Chicago CB Charles Tillman suffered a leg injury and was ruled out prior to the start of the second half. ... Despite taking part in warmups, Indianapolis WR Austin Collie was ruled inactive while he continues to deal with concussion symptoms.
Top Game Performances
Team Stats Summary
Chicago will play their next game on the road against Green Bay.
The Bears have a W/L % of .000 after a win and .000 after a loss.
Indianapolis will play their next game at home against Minnesota.
The Colts have a W/L % of .000 after a win and .000 after a loss.