NFC North roundup: Six hours later, Bears once again share division lead


The Purple's chances at a playoff spot probably slipped away Sunday in Seattle.

Don't laugh, we were still holding out hope, excuse us for wanting the Vikings to win.

Sorry, we'll settle down.

Welcome to our weekly look at the NFC North, something we like to do to keep you caught up on the region so you can smack talk, hang your head in shame, or call in sick to work so you don't have to face the music if you're a Packer, Bear, or Lions fan. Unfortunately, we already know there's been plenty of Purple supporters calling in sick on Mondays.

Here's what the division had in store this week.

CHICAGO 23, BALTIMORE 20 (OT): This noon game was only 10 minutes old before a tornado warning forced a two hour weather delay. Reports say a rather sizable tornado did touch down in Illinois, but when 2:25 p.m. came around, the teams took the field once again after the stands were cleared during the delay.

When the teams did get back to work, the Bears were down 10-0, but their defense stepped up and picked off Joe Flacco, returning it for a touchdown.

Flash forward to early in the fourth quarter, where the Bears took the lead on a Matt Forte run. Baltimore kicker Justin Tucker answered with a 21-yard field goal to tie it with three seconds left after the Bears held the Ravens on three consecutive plays from inside the five yard line.

Overtime came around and after the Bears stopped Baltimore, backup quarterback Josh McCown led Chicago down the field right around 5:30 p.m. central time, with Robbie Gould capping the game-winning drive with a 38-yard field goal.

N.Y. GIANTS 27, GREEN BAY 13: Backup quarterback Scott Tolzien started in New York despite the Packers signing Matt Flynn earlier this week, but a key mistake late cost Green Bay a chance at the win.

Tolzien and the Packers trailed the Giants 20-13 with the ball in the fourth quarter. Tolzien had already thrown an interception, and his second put the nail in the coffin of a defeat for the green and gold, with New York defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul returning the pick for a touchdown.

Tolzien would throw one more for good measure, and the Packers have now lost three in a row, while the Giants, after beating the Vikings a month ago in Josh Freeman's only start, have now won four straight.

PITTSBURGH 37, DETROIT 27: Matt Stafford threw for 267 yards...IN THE SECOND QUARTER, and the Lions looked sharp in the first half.

But the first half proficiency turned to second half futility, and Detroit was shutout after a 27-point second quarter, while the Steelers scored 17 in the second half to lock up the victory.

Calvin Johnson didn't have a catch in the final 30 minutes after putting up 179 yards and two first half touchdowns, while Ben Roethlisberger torched Detroit's secondary to the tune of four scores and 367 yards.

With those results, the standings now look like this.





Detroit holds the tiebreak over Chicago via their two wins over the Bears earlier this year, while Green Bay is hoping that Matt Flynn learns quick, or Aaron Rodgers heals quick so the Packer offense can return to some semblance of normalcy.

The Purple are hoping for Johnny Manziel.

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