Playing the Bengals should help ready the Bears for visiting the Detroit Lions in a few weeks. Ndamukong Suh may have been busy trying to injure Minnesota Vikings on Sunday but his spirit was carried on by a Bengals team that lost its composure in a game that was firmly in their control.
“There’s a little too much jawing out there on the football field,” said defensive tackle Geno Atkins. “I think we’ll get that under control.”
The defense took away the Cincinnati offense’s last gasp. A third-down try by the Bears had come up short with 1:15 remaining at the Cincinnati 45. The Bengals had run themselves out of time outs trying to slow the Bears on the previous possession so they couldn’t stop the clock but at least stood to get the ball back one more time for Andy Dalton and A.J. Green.
But linebacker Rey Maualuga threw a gratuitous shot at tackle Jordan Mills, the Bears were handed 15 yards and a first down, and Jay Cutler took a couple kneel-downs for the win.
Dre Kirkpatrick, the Alabama cornerback who was the 17th-overall pick of the 2012 draft, effectively gave the Bears three points at the end of the first half with a personal foul following a punt that would have left the Bears at their 41-yard line with 42 seconds left.
The Bears offense was doing nothing but the personal foul moved the Bears within Robbie Gould’s range and the result was a franchise-record field goal of 58 yards.
“Unfortunately we had a lot of guys lose composure,” said coach Marvin Lewis, then citing instances of the Bears not getting called for fouls. “For whatever reason, we didn’t get any offsets. Their guy hit our guy out of bounds late on our sideline but we can’t retaliate…. Unfortunately we let them get under our skin.”