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updated: 10/25/2010 3:52 PM

Bears' defense does its job

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  • Chicago Bears defensive end Julius Peppers walks off the field following the Bears' 14-17 loss to the Redskins Sunday at Soldier Filed in Chicago.

      Chicago Bears defensive end Julius Peppers walks off the field following the Bears' 14-17 loss to the Redskins Sunday at Soldier Filed in Chicago.
    Steve Lundy

  • Chicago Bears linebacker Brian Iwuh sacks Washington Redskins quarterback Donovan McNabb during the Bears' 14-17 loss to the Redskins Sunday at Soldier Field in Chicago.

      Chicago Bears linebacker Brian Iwuh sacks Washington Redskins quarterback Donovan McNabb during the Bears' 14-17 loss to the Redskins Sunday at Soldier Field in Chicago.
    Steve Lundy

  • Chicago Bears defensive tackle Israel Idonije bats a Washington Redskins quarterback Donovan McNabb pass Sunday at Soldier Field.

      Chicago Bears defensive tackle Israel Idonije bats a Washington Redskins quarterback Donovan McNabb pass Sunday at Soldier Field.
    John Starks

 

Despite an open invitation from Jay Cutler, Bears defensive end Julius Peppers insisted nobody on his side of the ball holds a grudge against the offense.

"It ain't about being mad at nobody," Peppers said. "We can be mad at the outcome. It's not about placing the blame on anybody else or somebody pointing the finger."

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When asked whether the defense did enough to win Sunday, middle linebacker Brian Urlacher snapped, "Obviously not."

Nonetheless, if you can forget the offense's 6 second-half turnovers for a moment, consider just how well the defense laid the groundwork for a convincing victory instead of a 17-14 loss at Soldier Field.

"The second half, it was domination out there," said Bears nickel back D.J. Moore. "They couldn't throw the ball or run it."

At least not without trying to give it away to the Bears. Here's the proof:

Until Redskins quarterback Donovan McNabb started kneeling with 1:45 left and the game clinched, he took 26 second-half snaps where the play was allowed to continue.

Of those snaps, the Bears produced 1 diving interception by Danieal Manning.

They produced 1 interception return for a touchdown (by Moore) that was brought back because of a delay-of-game penalty.

They forced the Redskins into losing 1 fumble when linebacker Pisa Tinoisamoa stripped running back Ryan Torain as he raced into the red zone.

They also forced four more fumbles 2 by Charles Tillman, 1 by Brian Iwuh and 1 by Israel Idonije that the Redskins either recovered or swatted out of bounds.

For the hard of dividing, that's a potential takeaway every 3.7 plays after halftime.

Moreover, Washington's offense managed no points, 5 first downs and 132 yards in the second half.

And if you stretch this trend back even further to the final 10:21 of the second quarter the Redskins went three-and-out with 11 total yards on their final three first-half possessions it's easy to understand why the defense might be a wee bit miffed.

Idonije, who continued his recent brilliance with 1 sack, 2 pass knockdowns, 1 forced fumble and 1 quarterback hurry, chose to spin his disappointment over Sunday's misadventures into a positive.

Remember, the Bears lost linebacker Lance Briggs (ankle) before the first quarter ended Sunday and safety Major Wright (hamstring) hasn't played since Week 2. Both could be ready to go when the Bears face Buffalo on Nov. 7.

"We're going to enjoy the bye," Idonije said, "heal up and the team we put on the field after the bye is going to be the team that we are.

"Because we're giving the games away. It's not like somebody's coming in here and actually destroying us. We're giving these wins away, plain and simple."

Urlacher isn't quite as certain.

"We're not where we want to be, I know that much," he said. "You want to get better as the season goes on and I don't know if we're doing that right now.

"We're making too many mistakes on both sides of the ball and we're not progressing like we should."

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