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Grading the Bears vs. the Vikings

QUARTERBACK: A-

This loss wasn’t Jay Cutler’s fault. Cutler (22-of-33, 211 yards, 1 TD, 0 INTs, 94.4) did not have a turnover for the first time all season and gave the Bears a chance to win with an efficient drive in the fourth quarter.

RUNNING BACKS: C

Matt Forte (10 carries, 41 yards) didn’t seem to have a lot of room to run before he suffered a knee injury. Jeremy Langford (12-46) had a huge drop in the fourth quarter.

RECEIVERS: B+

Alshon Jeffery (10 receptions, 116 yards, 1 TD) was a difference-maker. After Eddie Royal (3-2) was injured, Marc Mariani made a huge third-down catch on the fourth-quarter TD drive.

OFFENSIVE LINE: C

In a tough spot with three new starters in the middle, the line played well enough to win. The Bears rushed for 97 yards on 25 carries and Cutler was sacked only once. Charles Leno and Patrick Omameh were called for holding.

DEFENSIVE LINE: C-

Will Sutton batted a pass at the line, but rookie Eddie Goldman (1 tackle) and Jarvis Jenkins (3 tackles) did not appear to make the impact that had in previous games.

LINEBACKERS: C

Pernell McPhee had some good rushes and the Bears’ only sack and Christian Jones had a tackle-for-loss. Sam Acho was OK. LaRoy Reynolds and Jonathan Anderson were not big factors.

DEFENSIVE BACKS: C-

A promising performance — Kyle Fuller’s INT set up a TD and Bryce Callahan had 2 big stops on Adrian Peterson — was ruined by a poor finish. Teddy Bridgewater had a perfect 158.3 rating in the final 4:55 (6-of-7, 106 yards, 1 TD).

SPECIAL TEAMS: D

Marcus Sherel’s 65-yard punt return TD was the third kick-return TD allowed by the Bears in 7 games. Marc Mariani muffed two punts without losing either one. Robby Gould kicked a 55-yard FG.

COACHING: C

Though the Bears aren’t healthy enough or deep enough to be a contender, they should be enough to win the games they can win. John Fox still has a lot of work to do.

Follow me on Twitter @MarkPotash

Email: mpotash@suntimes.com