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Bears MVP Meter: Week 16

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Dan Parr
Associate editor

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Posted Dec. 27, 2010 @ 1:32 p.m. ET
By Dan Parr

PFW associate editor Dan Parr presents a running meter that indicates the Bears' top MVP candidates through their most recent game:

(Last week's ranking in parentheses)

1. DE Julius Peppers (1): Coming off one of his quietest games of the season — he was credited with only one tackle — Peppers' lead on the Meter is about as slim as it gets. He hurried QB Mark Sanchez a few times on Sunday, but OTs D'Brickashaw Ferguson and Wayne Hunter did a good job of neutralizing him and the rest of Chicago's pass rushers. The Bears didn't record a sack for the fourth time this season (the first time since Week Six).

2. MLB Brian Urlacher (2): Urlacher had a better day than Peppers and is still within striking distance on the Meter. The Jets' power rushing attack put Urlacher and other members of the "D" on their heels at times, particularly on the goal line in the first half, but his hurry of Sanchez on a blitz in the fourth quarter helped bring about a key incompletion. He finished with eight tackles, bringing his season total to 120.

3. QB Jay Cutler (3): Cutler's arrow is pointing up on the Meter this week. He did hurt the Bears with an interception that was returned for a TD when he tried to force a pass to Earl Bennett early in the second quarter, but he threw all three of his TD passes in the third quarter after rushing for a score with a little less than three minutes before halftime. Mistakes like the pick-six are a big part of what has kept him from climbing higher on the Meter.

4. WR-RS Devin Hester (4): Whether he was on offense or returning kicks, Hester made a major impact in both facets of the game once again. He scored on a 25-yard catch after returning a punt 38 yards a few plays earlier and had one kickoff return for 40 yards, which gave the Bears the ball at the Jets' 49-yard line and set up another Bears TD.

5. RB Matt Forté (NR): Forté returns to the Meter this week after rushing for 113 yards and a TD on 19 carries against one of the league's top run defenses. He also was productive as a receiver, making four catches for 56 yards. The running game has picked up of late and Forté's play has helped bring balance to Chicago's offense. DE Israel Idonije fell off the Meter this week, but is still a contender for the fifth spot with one game to play in the regular season.

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