Giddyup: Bears opener full of thrilling firsts

September 09, 2012|RedEye

It's been awhile since Bears fans were this giddy about the start of the season, and with good reason. The team appears healthy. Jay Cutler's got tons of weapons on offense. And Urlacher's knee … well, we're not sure what to make of that yet. But even that uncertainty couldn't ruin the excitement of the season opener, and all the firsts that came with it.

PREGAME

Bear to run on the field: Brian Urlacher. It's a good sign, even if all he was trying to do was convince the Colts his ailing knee is a non-issue.

Goosebumps: Jim Cornelison nails the national anthem, per usual, and this one has a jet flyover to boot. Hopefully this won't be the last time we hear him for a while. You listening, NHL players and owners?

FIRST QUARTER

Sack of Cutler (14:56): The Bears can't even protect him on the first play from scrimmage. Sigh. Maybe it's good that they got it out of the way.

Bears penalty (14:22): False start on Gabe Carimi. This does not enhance fans' confidence in the offensive line.

"I thought we were past this" moment (11:28): On the first play of the Bears' second drive, Cutler finds … Jerrell Freeman of the Colts, who walks the interception in for a touchdown.

Brandon Marshall sighting (10:42): Cutler finds the prized acquisition for 13 yards on third-and-10. How awesome is it having him around?

Bears big play (9:56): Matt Forte bursts left for 32 yards. The knee feels great, thankyouverymuch.

Bears touchdown (7:21): Forte fantasy owners hate it, but Michael Bush fits his role to perfection by powering into the end zone from the 1.

Urlacher tackle (7:19): He corrals Reggie Wayne and looks OK. Fans hope he's got at least 100 more tackles in him this season.

Shea McClellin sighting (4:33): The first-round pick knocks Colts QB Andrew Luck to the turf, resulting in an incomplete pass on third down. That's why you were drafted, Kid. (4:33)

SCORE: Bears 7, Colts 7

SECOND QUARTER

Marshall Madness moment (10:37): Cutler delivers a strike to the Pro Bowl receiver, who's parked just inside the goal line, for a 3-yard score.

Jaw-dropping play (9:53): Tim Jenningsmakes a leaping, juggling interception on a Luck bomb down the right sideline. These aren't college cornerbacks, Andrew.

Break from the refs (9:53): On Jennings' interception, it looks like Bears defensive lineman Israel Idonije might have been offside. Whew!

Field goal (4:08): A 35-yarder from Robbie Gould. He's still automatic.

"Where's the D?" moment (3:25): Donald Brown (uh, who?) encounters little resistance on his 18-yard TD run.

Alshon Jeffery sighting (8:21): The rookie makes a terrific catch with two defenders on his back for 15 yards and a first down. How long before he's compared to Marshall?

Test of instant replay (0:50): An Earl Bennett touchdown is called back, and he's marked him down inside the 1. Looks like the right call, and Bush scores on the next play anyway.

HALFTIME SCORE: Bears 24, Colts 14

THIRD QUARTER

"This is an NFL defense?" moment (11:57): No need to bring in Bush on this one: Forte jukes and dives his way into the end zone, and it looks as if the rout is on.

Bone-rattling hit (7:06): Kelvin Hayden demolishes the Colts' Donnie Avery, preventing a completion. Save some ice for that guy.

Touchdown-saving turnover (4:57): Chris Conte intercepts Luck in the end zone after Jennings tips a pass intended for Wayne.

Coach's challenge (1:53): Score one for Lovie Smith! With 1:46 left in the third, he throws the red flag on an incomplete pass, and it's overturned and ruled a fumble, which is recovered by Julius Peppers.

SCORE: Bears 34, Colts 14

FOURTH QUARTER

Injury scare (15:00): Urlacher starts the fourth quarter where he ended the third: on the sideline. Hopefully it's just a precaution.

Andrew Luck TD pass (10:24): The rookie finds Avery 4-yard score. There are plenty more where that came from, but not enough to win Sunday.

Jeffery touchdown (6:16): He hauls in a 42-yard pass from Cutler to put this one even more out of reach.

Bears sack (5:18): Lance Briggs and Henry Melton put the squeeze on Luck. Took them long enough.

Victory: The defense looked shaky at times and the start was tough to stomach, but overall the Bears dominated. Bring on the Packers!

FINAL SCORE: Bears 41, Colts 21

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