Week 12 Bears Grades: Special teams

Week 12 Bears Grades: Special teams
November 24, 2013, 7:30 pm
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Moon's Bears Grades

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The Bears never got close enough to put the game onto Robbie Gould’s foot, and they have no one to blame but themselves, with a sharp finger pointed at special teams, which had three holding penalties assessed.

“Every one of them strongly affected the football game,” coach Marc Trestman said, speaking of not just special teams, but he might as well have been.

Devin Hester broke a punt return for touchdown in the fourth quarter, only to have it nullified by a holding penalty on Craig Steltz — not downfield trying to throw a block but at the line of scrimmage.

The Bears eventually did score to make up for the points and close to 27-21. But the drive to make up that lost touchdown consumed seven minutes, time the Bears desperately needed in a game in which they never led.

[MORE: "Lost" Bears lose self-control and chance to take North lead]

A holding penalty Khaseem Greene on the Bears’ first kickoff return was a deflator, pushing the offensive back to the 9 to start the first possession. Derrick Martin was called for holding on a third-quarter kickoff return, setting the offense up at the Chicago. 7.

Coverage units did a solid job containing dangerous rookie Tavon Austin, who had one kickoff return for 24 yards but little else. Adam Podlesh’s average on three punts was a modest 40.8, but two of the three were inside the 20.

Moon's Grade: D