Chicago Bears wide receiver Brandon Marshall (15) catches a 13-yard touchdown pass as he is defended by Tennessee Titans cornerback Coty Sensabaugh (24) and safety Michael Griffin (33) in the first quarter of an NFL football game on Sunday, Nov. 4, 2012, in Nashville, Tenn.
Joe Howell, Associated Press - Ap
Bears force 5 turnovers, rout Titans 51-20
- Article by: TERESA M. WALKER
- Associated Press
- November 4, 2012 - 6:14 PM
NASHVILLE, Tenn. - Charles Tillman forced four fumbles. Brian Urlacher scored on a 46-yard interception return. Plus, the Chicago Bears turned a blocked punt into a touchdown.
Even when they don't start with the ball, these Bears are exceptionally dangerous.
Jay Cutler threw three TD passes to Brandon Marshall just for good measure and the Bears put up their highest point total since 1980, routing the Tennessee Titans 51-20 on Sunday for their sixth straight win.
The Bears (7-1) scored a franchise-record 28 points in the first quarter. They took control by creating three turnovers in the first 13 minutes, resulting in 14 points.
Urlacher became the latest Bears defender to score on an interception return. They have done it seven times — no other NFL team had returned six for TDs through the first seven games of any season.
The Bears had already topped the 50-point mark with 10 minutes still left. They posted their highest-scoring game since matching a team record in a 61-7 win over Green Bay on Dec. 7, 1980.
The Titans (3-6) lost their second straight with Chicago fans taking over LP Field, booing any video highlights featuring the rival Packers and frequently chanting "Let's go, Bears."
Tennessee's lone highlight when Chris Johnson scored on an 80-yard run in the fourth quarter. Johnson finished with 141 yards on 16 carries against the NFL's best rushing defense, with a big chunk coming when he broke out and went up the right sideline with 10:09 left in the fourth quarter.
Tillman, the NFC defensive player for October, helped start the Bears' first-quarter spree. The cornerback stripped receiver Kenny Britt of the ball on Tennessee's first offensive play for the Bears' 24th turnover this season.
Tillman also forced two fumbles by Johnson and later stripped Titans tight end Jared Cook.
Cutler tossed TDs of 13, 39 and 5 yards to Marshall and finished with 229 yards passing. Cutler, who starred in Nashville in college at Vanderbilt, spent the final 10 minutes watching Jason Campbell mop up. Matt Forte ran for a TD and finished with 103 yards.
The Bears got on the board first with special teams.
Sherrick McManis ran untouched around the right edge and blocked Brett Kern's punt, and Corey Wootton grabbed the ball and stumbled 5 yards into the end zone for a touchdown with 6:44 left in the first quarter. The Titans came back with a safety when Bears left tackle J'Marcus Webb grabbed at defensive end Kamerion Wimbley's face in the end zone.
Otherwise, the Bears dominated. Urlacher picked off Matt Hasselbeck and stepped over the Titans quarterback on his way to the end zone two plays after Forte's TD run. Tillman forced another fumble on Tennessee's next offensive play, and Chris Conte recovered.
Cutler capped the scoring for the first quarter with his first TD pass to Marshall and a 28-2 lead with 93 seconds still left.
Even in the blowout, the Bears showed their offense still needs some work. They outgained the Titans 358-333 despite holding the ball for 37 minutes against a Tennessee defense that came in ranked 30th in yards allowed. The Bears also settled for three field goals by Robbie Gould, the longest 39 yards.
The Titans sacked Cutler three times and force one fumble. That set up a 39-yard field goal by Rob Bironas to pull within 31-5 after three failed attempts throwing into the end zone — two nearly picked off by the Bears.
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