Monday night in "Big D" proved to be rather unpleasant for the host Dallas Cowboys as they welcomed in the NFC North's Chicago Bears.
Billed as the battle of the two "almost elite" quarterbacks, the Monday night matchup featured Chicago's controversial Jay Cutler and his revamped receiving corps against the Cowboys' charismatic Tony Romo and his promising pass catchers.
Although it started out as a low scoring defensive battle that didn't even yield its first field goal until just over four minutes left in the second quarter the Bears' decisive 34-18 victory was again sparked by their relentless pass rush and outstanding secondary play.
Chicago's Pro Bowl cornerback, Charles "Peanut" Tillman, snagged Romo's first of five total interceptions late in the second quarter and waltzed into the end zone unscathed for the game's first touchdown.
Bouncing right back from his blunder, Romo quickly lead Dallas down the field. His timely touchdown toss to Miles Austin with just 14 seconds left before half time left America's Team down only 10-7 at the break.
Unfortunately for Dallas the game would not get within their grasp the rest of the way. Cutler came out of the locker room and fired a 34-yard touchdown to wide receiver and kick returner extraordinaire Devin Hester. Devin's deceptive double move deep down the field burned Cowboys rookie cornerback Morris Claiborne and put the Bears up 17-7.
With a 10-point lead Chicago's soul crushing pass rushers turned up the heat on Romo. Henry Melton bullied his way passed the Cowboys' porous offensive line and popped the ball up to seven-time Pro Bowl linebacker, Lance Briggs. Scampering 74 yards the other way for another Bears' defensive touchdown Briggs put the Monsters of the Midway up 24-7.
"Just outstanding play by our defense," Bears coach Lovie Smith said following the significant victory. "It seemed like everybody had a say in it. How about Lance Briggs? You guys didn't know he could run that fast."
While the incredible Chicago defense provided the catalyst for crushing the Cowboys, Cutler who finished 18 of 24 for 275 yards and two touchdowns, finally clicked with almost every weapon within his offensive arsenal.
Tight end Kellen Davis finally came up with some crucial catches, rookie Alshon Jeffery helped move the chains and the Bears bona fide number one receiver Brandon Marshall also put his stamp on the stat sheet, nabbing seven balls for 138 yards and a TD.
Chicago hopes to carry over the momentum of their meaningful Monday night mauling to Jacksonville this Sunday. If the Bears can avoid a letdown and beat the 1-3 Jaguars they will head into their October 14th bye week at 4-1 as a top contender for the NFC North crown.