SEATTLE − If you're looking for bright spots in the Chicago Bears' 34-6 loss Friday night to the Seattle Seahawks, it's possible to find a few, but probably not without a magnifying glass.
The Bears' No. 1 defense allowed the Seahawks to convert all 7 of their third-down situations in the first half, and Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson completed 14 of 17 passes for 174 yards, 2 touchdowns and a 147.7 passer rating.
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First positive of note: The Bears' defense, particularly the front four, was able to pressure Wilson, forcing him to scramble four times Friday night. The end result, however, was 23 yards rushing for Wilson, including a 7-yard TD.
The Bears unit, however, only sacked Wilson once, and that tackle came from Willie Young, starting at right end in place of Jared Allen, who sat with a shoulder bruise. Young also had a pair of quarterback hits and led the Bears with 6 tackles.
Austen Lane had the Bears' other sack, in the fourth quarter, long after Wilson was out of the game.
"We have to keep mobile quarterbacks like that in the pocket and force them to throw from the pocket," Bears coach Marc Trestman said. "We didn't do that."
Fortunately for the Bears, they won't face many quarterbacks with the same combination of speed, quickness and elusiveness as Wilson. They do, however, have to defend three of the league's more mobile quarterbacks in the first five games of the regular season − the San Francisco 49ers' Colin Kaepernick, the Green Bay Packers' Aaron Rodgers, and the Carolina Panthers' Cam Newton.
While the Bears allowed back-to-back touchdown drives of 14 plays and 89 yards and 11 plays and 83 yards, the defense actually played well against the run, a second positive note from the game. The Seahawks rushed 31 times and didn't have a gain longer than 9 yards, and they only averaged a subpar 3.8 yards per carry.
The Bears defense wasn't as bad as the final score would indicate. Two of the Seahawks' TDs came after long returns were allowed by special teams, a 46-yard kickoff return and a 59-yard punt return.
Players were disappointed by the final result but seemed to believe that almost everything could be fixed.
"The great thing about this locker room is everyone knows there are things that we need to fix and work on, and that's what we're going to do," tackle Jeremiah Ratliff said. "Everyone's going to look at himself, and we're going to get it right."
The Bears are still 2-1 in the preseason and 12th-year veteran linebacker Lance Briggs said he's seen much worse starts end successfully.
"I've been on a Bears team that lost every preseason game (2010)," Briggs said. "Everybody was bearing down on us, saying it was going to be a bad season, and we went to the NFC championship."
Because they fell behind by so much and in such a hurry, the Bears' offense never got a chance to put much of an effort into the run game, although Matt Forte picked up 17 yards on 3 carries for a 5.7-yard average. That's a good average, but not enough of an effort to be considered a positive sign. Backup Ka'Deem Carey gained 15 yards on 4 carries and caught 4 passes for 27 yards.
A third positive to note from this lopsided loss came in the passing game, with veteran Josh Morgan catching 3 passes for 48 yards. Morgan could be the reliable third receiver the Bears have been looking for since Marquess Wilson suffered a fractured collar bone on Aug. 4.
Friday night's game will be a distant memory if the regular season gets off to a fast start.
"This game doesn't count once the season begins," Briggs said. "So for us, it's just learning. It's a training tape."
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