It was puzzling, how the Bears seemed to drift away from the run against the Green Bay Packers, especially when Matt Forte got off to such a strong start.
After gaining just three yards on the opening series, Forte exploded for runs of 25 and 21 yards on the third series before taking a break. Then, in the second quarter, Forte turned a short pass into a 27-yard gain. For the half, Forte had six runs for 54 yards and four catches for 41 yards. All told, the Bears ran the ball nine times in the first half for 65 yards and attempted 13 passes.
By game's end, Jay Cutler was 21 of 39 for just 168 yards, and the Bears finished with 20 carries for 110 yards.
"The last 12 plays were probably passes, I think," Bears offensive coordinator Mike Martz said. "Other than that, I think we had 23 called runs and 24 called passes or somewhere - there were a couple of plays in between there - but we were trying to get something going in the passing game on first down a little bit more than maybe what we have in the past.
"Didn't make any of those plays, and we've got to make them, obviously. We had eight opportunities in the passing game to make really big plays, and we didn't make one of them, which is not like us. I'm very disappointed in that. And of course if you don't make the play on first down, you give them second and 10 and so forth and so on. So that was unlike us, both in terms of the numbers and performance, I think, in the passing game, really."
But Martz's numbers are off. On the opening series of the second half, the Bears did have balance. Forte ran the ball four times for 20 yards, while Cutler was two-for-five for 17 yards. But one more run by Forte, Cutler attempted eight consecutive passes. That included two three-and-outs to end the third quarter.