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Mistakes are costly for Bears in loss to Falcons

Atlanta holds on for wild 21-14 victory over Chicago.

October 19, 2009|Associated Press

ATLANTA — Chicago made another huge mistake in the red zone, and the Atlanta Falcons held on for another wild victory over the Bears.

Michael Turner scored the go-ahead touchdown on an otherwise forgettable night, powering over from five yards with 3:06 remaining, and the defense held at the end to preserve a 21-14 victory Sunday night.

Matt Ryan threw two touchdown passes for the Falcons (4-1), who matched the best five-game start in franchise history. The Bears (3-2) will surely be moaning about all the mistakes down close that helped end their three-game winning streak: a fumble at the one, an interception at the nine and a crucial penalty when they had fourth and one at the Atlanta five with less than a minute to go.

The teams played a thriller for the second year in a row. This time, the team that was behind couldn't pull off the comeback. Jay Cutler drove the Bears down the field, and a disputed pass interference penalty on Curtis Lofton gave Chicago a first down at the Atlanta 14. Two penalties left Chicago with third and 25 before Cutler went over the middle to Earl Bennett, who came down with the ball amid three defenders for a 24-yard reception.

That left the Bears needing three feet on fourth down, and they called time to set up a play. But left tackle Orlando Pace inexplicably took off ahead of the snap, leaving Chicago with a much more daunting fourth and six. Cutler's final pass, going for Desmond Clark over the middle, bounced off the receiver's arm with Erik Coleman defending to preserve the victory with 29 seconds left.

Greg Olsen appeared to be open in the back of the end zone, but Cutler didn't see him.

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