Bears 60-second rant: Defense fading fast

Posted Oct. 11, 2011 @ 8:35 p.m.
Posted By Dan Parr

The Bears didn't dominate in many areas in their loss to the Lions, but they did in time of possession, holding the ball for almost twice as long as Detroit did.

The Lions had the ball for only 20:57, and that was all the time they needed to embarrass Chicago's defense and put a few more cracks in its foundation.

QB Matthew Stafford and WR Calvin Johnson did what teams aren't supposed to be able to do against the Bears. They connected on a 73-yard touchdown pass, beating two deep safeties. Lions RB Jahvid Best gutted Chicago's run defense, going untouched on an 88-yard touchdown run — his previous career-high for rushing yards in a game was 78 — and he finished the night with 12 carries for 163 yards.

Defensive breakdowns resulting in big plays for opposing offenses are becoming standard for the Bears and of all the concerns for the defending NFC North champions —and there are many — that one has to be at the top of the list. The Bears' pillar — their rock-solid core — is collapsing. We've seen the breakdowns in each of the past four games. The Bears were able to overcome them vs. the Panthers and get a win in Week Four, when RB Matt Forté exploded for 205 rushing yards and Devin Hester returned a punt for a touchdown, but Carolina racked up 543 yards at Soldier Field.

In the last two games, teams have gained 350 yards rushing against the Bears and are averaging 7.6 yards per carry.

That's a troubling statistic heading into Week Six, when the Bears will line up across from Vikings RB Adrian Peterson.

Some were calling Chicago's Week Five game against Detroit a must-win, but it wasn't. The game against Minnesota is, and losing to a last-place team would be far more devastating than falling to the Lions or Packers. The Bears have to regain their footing on defense and win to avoid letting the season slip away.

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