NFC North: Lions gain little ground as Bears, Packers win Sunday

Posted Oct 29, 2012

The Lions won their third game of the season in comeback fashion Sunday vs. the Seahawks, 28-24, allowing them to keep pace in the NFC North by improving their record to 3-4.

Only the Vikings lost this week, meaning the Lions still trail the Packers (5-3) and Vikings (5-3) by a game and half and the Bears (6-1) by three games.

The Lions are still looking up at their NFC North foes, but keep in mind they still have two games against the Packers (Nov. 18, Dec. 9) and one each against the Vikings (Nov. 11) and Bears (Dec. 30).

Here’s a look at this week’s action in the NFC North:

What did we see: Another Lions come-from-behind victory.

Quarterback Matthew Stafford led the Lions on a 16-play, 80-yard drive over the final five minutes of the game and capped it off with a 1-yard touchdown pass to receiver Titus Young. The touchdown and that drive might have saved the Lions’ season.

The defense was short-handed without three starters, but played just good enough to win. Seattle rookie quarterback Russell Wilson threw for two touchdowns and had a 96.8 rating. Running back Marshawn Lynch had 105 yards on just 12 carries (including a 77-yard touchdown).

It wasn't great, but good enough.

Injury report: Safety Louis Delmas left the game in the third quarter after re-injuring the same left knee he had surgery on in August. He was being evaluated further today.

Trainers worked on the right lower leg of Leshoure late in the third quarter. He did not return to the game, but Lions head coach Jim Schwartz said that the decision was not injury related.

Next up: The Lions hit the road for the fifth time in eight games to play the Jaguars (1-6).

What did we see: The Packers played without their top two receivers, Greg Jennings and Jordy Nelson, as well as their top running back, Cedric Benson.

The lack of fire power showed in the stat book as the offense put up a season-low 238 yards and quarterback Aaron Rodgers finished under 200 yards passing for only the 11th time in his career.

The defense held the Jaguars to just 15 points, but that isn’t exactly a high-powered offense we're talking about.

Quarterback Blaine Gabbert completed 27-of-39 passes for 303 yards as the Packers played without S/CB Charles Woodson.

Injury report: DT Jerel Worthy left the game with a concussion and DE Mike Neal injured his ankle.

Next up: The Packers host the Cardinals (4-3) at Lambeau Field.

What did we see: The Bears had some comeback magic of their own Sunday vs. Carolina.

Cornerback Tim Jennings had a 25-yard interception return for a touchdown with 6:44 left and Bears kicker Robbie Gould made a 41-yard field goal with no time left to give the Bears the win.

The Bears got another lackluster performance from their offense as quarterback Jay Cutler threw for under 200 yards for the fourth time in seven games. They rushed for only 79 yards.

It wasn’t pretty, but a win is a win, and the Bears keep finding ways to do that.

Injury report: Wide receivers Earl Bennett and Brandon Marshall left the game briefly but returned. But both told the Chicago Sun-Times after the game they were okay.

Next up: The Bears travel to Tennessee to take on Titans (3-5).

What did we see: Quarterback Christian Ponder had a less-than-stellar outing for the second consecutive game.

After throwing for just 58 yards last week against the Cardinals, Ponder completed 54.3 percent of his passes Thursday against the Bucs with one interception and one touchdown.

It wasn’t all Ponder, though. The Vikings fell behind early because fumbles by receiver Jerome Simpson and running back Adrian Peterson led to 10 Buccaneer points.

The Vikings defense didn’t look like a top-11 unit trying to chase Bucs rookie running back Doug Martin all over the field. Martin finished with 135 rushing yards and 79 receiving.

Injury report: Cornerback Chris Cook suffered an arm injury and did not return.

Next up: The Vikings travel to Seattle and Century Link Field -- one of the toughest places to play in the NFL – to face the Seahawks (4-4).

Around the NFC North

Cutler terrible for three quarters but delivers a win
Dan Pompei -- Chicago Tribune

Ugly win a welcome result for Bears
Brad Biggs -- Chicago Tribune

More Devin Hester plays offense, less effective he is as returner
Mark Potash – Chicago Sun-Times

Bears' poor play turning out to be the anomaly
Rick Morrissey – Chicago Sun-Times

Five things we learned: Bears –Panthers
Jeff Dickerson –

CB Tim Jennings becoming a difference maker for Bears
Larry Mayer –

Lackluster effort produces 'a real nasty win'
Pete Dougherty – Green Bay Press-Gazette

Packers still dealing with anemic run game
Gary D'Amato – Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

Packers' Rodgers does just enough to win
Lori Nickel – Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

Packers 24, Jaguars 15: U-G-L-Y
Jason Wilde –

Vikings' ability to bounce back is about to be tested
Judd Zulgad –

Vikings trying to fend off doubt
Dan Wiederer – Minneapolis Star Tribune

Frazier: Ponder isn't the only one struggling
Kent Youngblood – Minneapolis Star Tribune