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3 things we learned about the Bears

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SEATTLE — The winless Chicago Bears managed just 146 yards and seven first downs in a 26-0 loss to the Seattle Seahawks on Sunday.

The Bears (0-3) struggled in all phases of the game — offense, defense, special teams — and were hurt by a 64-yard punt return from Seattle’s Richard Sherman that set up a field goal in the first half.

Then Seahawks rookie Tyler Lockett broke a franchise-long 105-yard kickoff return for a touchdown to open the second half that gave the Seahawks (1-2) a 13-0 lead.

“It wasn’t a great way to start the second half,” Bears coach John Fox said.

Chicago quarterback Jimmy Clausen, starting in place of injured Jay Cutler, completed 9 of 17 passes for 63 yards as the Bears fell to 0-3 for the first time since 2003.

“We just couldn’t generate anything,” Fox said.

Seattle quarterback Russell Wilson completed 20 of 30 passes for 235 yards and the touchdown.

Seattle’s offense, which was without Lynch for most of the first quarter, sputtered but was able to go into halftime with a 6-0 lead on two Hauschka field goals.

The Seahawks put in their first sustained drive of the first half in the final two minutes of the second quarter, resulting in another Hauschka field goal after Chicago cornerback Alan Bell knocked away passes on consecutive plays in the end zone.

The Seahawks scored two touchdowns over the first 10 1/2 minutes of the second half to put the game out of reach.

What we learned about the Bears

1. QB Jay Cutler is more important to the Chicago offense than some critics realize. With Cutler watching from the sideline, backup Jimmy Clausen struggled to get much going. The Seattle defense had a lot to do with that, but there were opportunities that Cutler might have been able to exploit.

2. The Bears have some fight in them. The score might not indicate it, but they were actually in the game until well into the third quarter. “Honestly, I don’t think it ever got out of hand,” Seattle CB Richard Sherman said after the game. Two special teams errors led to 10 of Seattle’s first 13 points. The Bears aren’t going anywhere and they probably know it, but they showed no signs of shirking the challenge Sunday.

3. The Bears still haven’t solved their problems on special teams. Chicago gave up another long kickoff return touchdown, the second of the season, and got burned on a trick play for a 64-yard punt return. Tyler Lockett’s 105-yard kickoff return marked the second time already this season that an opposing kick returner came out of the end zone to score. On this one, Lockett wasn’t even touched. The 64-yard punt return, which didn’t result in a score, came when Seattle’s return unit tricked the Chicago punt team into thinking the ball had been kicked to the right side of the field when it actually went left — right into the arms of CB Richard Sherman as he stood alone on that side of the field.

Etc.

–QB Jimmy Clausen wasn’t able to do much in his first start in place of Jay Cutler. He completed 9 of 17 passes, with only one reception going past 10 yards. Clausen accounted for just 63 passing yards in the 26-0 loss.

–CB Alan Bell closed out Sunday’s first half in style, breaking up end-zone passes on back-to-back plays as Seattle had to settle for a Steven Hauschka field goal. The Seahawks tested Bell by lining up 6-foot-7 TE Jimmy Graham wide left and throwing him a fade against the 6-2 Ball, who knocked the ball away. On the next play, Seattle put 6-5 WR Chris Matthews on Ball’s side and tried again — only to get the same result.

–DE Will Sutton suffered a biceps injury in the first half on Sunday and did not return.

–LT Jermon Bushrod continues to battle the injury bug. He had a concussion on Sunday and sat out most of the second half.


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