Dominant Bears maul winless Steelers

Mon Sep 23, 2013 2:16am EDT
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(Reuters) - The Chicago Bears pulled away in the final quarter to secure a 40-23 win over Pittsburgh on Sunday to maintain their unbeaten opening to the new campaign and send the Steelers to their first 0-3 start since 2000.

The Bears defense forced five Pittsburgh turnovers and scored two touchdowns in a wild game that lifted them to 3-0.

"The defense did a great job of keeping us in it and giving us an opportunity," Chicago quarterback Jay Cutler told reporters after throwing for 159 yards and one score.

Cutler provided a signature play in the final quarter when he ran over a Pittsburgh defender to get a first down en route to a drive that put the Bears a decisive 11 points ahead.

"(The team) was all yelling for me to get down when I got back to the huddle. We didn't play well in the second half, I just wanted to make sure I picked it up."

Chicago raced out to a 17-0 lead in the first quarter and led 24-3 in the second before Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger connected on a 33-yard touchdown to Antonio Brown to spark a comeback.

Roethlisberger finished with 406 yards passing while Brown had 196 yards receiving and two scores.

Brown also had a one-handed, 21-yard touchdown grab in the third and after Shaun Suisham kicked his third field goal of the game, Pittsburgh had pulled to within 27-23 early in the fourth.

But the Bears sealed it when Earl Bennett made an acrobatic 17-yard catch along the sideline to put the visitors 34-23 ahead and Julius Peppers returned a fumble 42 yards for the final score of the game.   Continued...