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1985 Bears Coverage: McMahon expected to play against Dallas

Every day of the 2015 Chicago Bears season, Chicago Sun-Times Sports will revisit its coverage 30 years ago during the 1985 Bears’ run to a Super Bowl title.

McMahon expected to play against Dallas

Herb Gould

Originally published Nov. 11, 1985

Jim McMahon, who has a mild shoulder sprain, “tried to throw before the game and couldn’t,” said coach Mike Ditka. “I think Jim will be ready” for Sunday’s contest in Dallas. . .The weather – listed at a blustery, wet 39 degrees, not counting the chilling effect of a 17-m.p.h. wind – made it a poor day for throwing. That, plus the Lions’ vulnerability against the run, added up to the first double 100-yard game for Bear running backs since Nov. 20, 1983, when Suhey (112 yards) and Walter Payton (106) trampled Tampa Bay. Yesterday, it was Payton (107) and Matt Suhey (102). . .Suhey and Dave Duerson received game balls.

The Bears can clinch the NFC Central with a victory in Dallas. The Lions and Minnesota, who meet in Detroit Sunday, are both one game away from being eliminated. . .The Bears have won 16 of their last 17 against NFC Central opponents, 15 of their last 17 at Soldier Field.

Kicker Kevin Butler’s string of nine consecutive field goals was broken when he missed a 43-yarder in the fourth quarter. Butler, who has a sore foot, connected from 39 yards.

When Otis Wilson was called for roughing the punter, Lion coach Darryl Rogers said, the Lions would have declined the penalty if the referees had given them the option. Detroit, trailing 7-0 in the second quarter, had punted on third down from its own 28 and downed the ball at the Bear 8. Instead, Detroit got a first down at its 33. Two plays later, Duerson picked off a Detroit pass.

Wilson also had an interception, while Mike Singletary recovered two fumbles.

Holdout safety Todd Bell was in town over the weekend to “clean out his locker” and attend the Ohio State-Northwestern game. Bell, who lives in Middletown, Ohio, apparently didn’t make the trip to try to negotiate a contract. Bell met with many of his teammates Saturday at Halas Hall. Gary Fencik said last night on WMAQ-AM he spoke with Bell and Bell said he doesn’t anticipate playing for the Bears this year.