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Lions-Bears matchup of the day: Thursday

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Dan Parr

dparr@pfwmedia.com
Associate editor

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By Dan Parr

Here's a look at a key matchup heading into Sunday's battle between the Lions and Bears.

Lions defense vs. Bears RB Matt Forté

Every Bears opponent, including the Lions in Week Five, has struggled to keep Forté bottled up this season — he has had at least one 21-yard gain as rusher or receiver in every game and the Packers are the only team to keep him from gaining more than 100 yards from scrimmage.

Carving up the Lions is nothing new to Forté, though. He has been doing it since his rookie year, when he rushed for 126 yards against them, which was a career-high at that point, in Week Nine of the 2008 season. He has four 100-yard rushing games against the Lions and has gained 6.5 yards per touch in his seven career games against Detroit.

The Lions' run defense is reeling entering Sunday's game at Soldier Field. The Lions have allowed 113 yards rushing or more in seven consecutive games and have been gashed for 527 yards rushing on 90 carries (5.9 average) in their past three games.

The Bears have had great success running to the right side with ORT Lance Louis sealing the edge and interior linemen getting to the second level and clearing out linebackers. Lions DTs Corey Williams and Ndamukong Suh are a formidable tandem and have the potential to get a good push, but they have to play with discipline. It's likely defensive coordinator Gunther Cunningham will put eight defenders in the box frequently to try to keep Forté from finding a running lane.

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