Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day
CHICAGO, Ill - The Chicago Bears showed how serious they are about contending for the NFC title tonight, dominating the defending conference champions. Rex Grossman threw for 232 yards and Ricky Manning Jr. intercepted two of Matt Hasselbeck's passes to lead Chicago to a 37-6 victory over the Seattle Seahawks.
Grossman had another solid performance, completing 17 of 31 passes with two touchdowns and no interceptions, and the Bears improved to 4-0 for the first time since 1991. Bernard Berrian had three receptions for a career-high 108 yards and a touchdown. The Bears also got their running game going after three sluggish performances, with Thomas Jones rushing for 98 yards and two touchdowns. And the league's fourth-ranked defense shut down a Seahawks team that was missing injured running back Shaun Alexander.
With the Bears leading 10-3, Manning intercepted Hasselbeck twice in the second quarter to set up a field goal and touchdown. Hasselbeck was 16-of-35 for 196 yards and did not throw a touchdown, after tying a franchise record with five scoring passes the previous week in a 42-30 victory over the New York Giants. He was sacked five times - including twice each by Tommie Harris and Mark Anderson. Maurice Morris started for Alexander and carried 11 times for 35 yards.
The league MVP, Alexander had been bothered by a bruised bone in his left foot before it cracked during last week's win over the Giants. So he sat for the first time since being drafted in 2000, and Morris made the fifth start of his career. The Seattle defense took a hit in the second quarter, when safety Michael Boulware suffered a concussion while breaking up a pass intended for Chicago's John Gilmore at the Seattle 1. Sunday's game was the ninth between the two teams and their first in three years.