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Photo - Aj Mansour (KFAN)
By: Aj Mansour | KFAN.com
Minneapolis, MN - Week two of the young NFL season brings the Minnesota Vikings to Soldier Field in Chicago, IL to face off against the 1-0 Chicago Bears. The all-time record between these two teams spans the distance of 104 games with the head-to-head record favoring the Vikings in the form of 53 wins, 49 losses and 2 ties. Still, most recently the contest has more often than not gone the direction of the Bears who have won six of the last seven match ups. Playing in Chicago, the Bears have won the last eleven match ups stemming back to the year 2000 when the Vikings walked away victorious 30-27.
Here's the scouting report on the 2013 Chicago bears...
WEATHER FORECAST - 69 degrees with scattered showers and a 30% chance of precipitation
LAST WEEK - Week one saw the Bears walk away with a 24-21 victory against a good Cincinnati Bengals squad, but it wasn't very pretty. Late in the third quarter, the Bears found themselves trailing 21-10 with no momentum, no energy and no success. Then they got their second wind and figured out the Andy Dalton plan of attack. The Bears rattled off 14 unanswered points behind the arm of Jay Cutler and a hefty defensive effort. At the end of the day, new Bears head coach Marc Trestman walked away from Soldier Field with his first NFL victory.
BEARS OFFENSE - Chicago's offense got off to a slow start last week but finished the game with back to back scoring drives of 80 and 81 yards respectively. Jay Cutler finished with 242 yards and 2 touchdown passes while Matt Forte tacked on 50 yards and another TD. While we all know the danger that Jay Cutler can bring to the field, Coach Trestman likes what he sees early from Forte.
"As a coach, you feel very fortunate to have a guy like that," Trestman said of Forte. "He's a complete back, a very good back. He can run inside and outside, he can catch the ball in space, he can do things at the line of scrimmage and he's a good pass protector."
While Forte continues to attack from all angles, the rest of the offense is still adjusting to Trestman's West-Coast themed offense.
"A new offense is a new offense, it takes time," Bears quarterback Jay Cutler said Wednesday. "It's still something that we're working on each and everyday. His emphasis is to protect the quarterback and get rid of the ball."
Another emphasis for the Bears during the off season was the offensive line. A year ago, the Bears offensive line allowed 32 sacks to quarterback Jay Cutler and was the center point of the Bears futility. Chicago spent two of their six draft picks this year on offensive linemen and both of them are starting at right guard and right tackle. With one game under their belt, so far so good.
"They played really well," Cutler said of his young offensive linemen. "They're getting better and better each day. There's going to be bumps in the road and they're going to make mistakes because they're young and haven't experienced things. We'll try to minimize them as much as possible and just try to put them in positions to be successful."
The Bears most dangerous offensive weapon continues to be wide receiver Brandon Marshall. Marshall continued his tear on the league last week reeling in eight passes for 104 yards and a TD. Marshall's last six games have seen him average 114 yards per game and have made his attack darn near impossible to stop.
BEARS DEFENSE - Turnovers have always been a key to the Bears defensive success. Sunday's win against Cincinnati was no different. Finding themselves down by eleven points, cornerback Charles Tillman boosted his team's spirits with two interceptions. That sort of opportunistic play spells bad news for Christian Ponder who was picked off three times last week against Detroit.
Rounding out the Bears defensive attack is the defensive line with Julius Peppers who tormented Matt Kalil and the Vikings o-line. Kalil got off to a rough start last week and hasn't seemed to be himself all preseason long.
Wednesday, Kalil told the Star Tribune that the problem's are behind him.
"I know what I need to fix," he said. "I've got my mind straight this week. I'm ready to get after it. I'm not freaked out. I had a bad game. As bad as it was, I still didn't give up a sack."
While there has been turn amongst the linebackers since last year, Lance Briggs still anchors a veteran laden crew that can cause a raucous across the middle of the field.
Aj Mansour covers Minnesota Sports for KFAN.com. Feel free to leave comments and questions regarding this post in the space provided below. For Vikings updates and breaking Vikings news, follow Aj on Twitter. @AjKFAN