When the Bears were desperate for a spark, Cordarrelle Patterson gave them one Sunday. Down 9-0 about 12 minutes into an eventual 36-25 loss to the Saints, the Bears receiver fielded a Wil Lutz kickoff two yards deep in the south end zone, in front of the “E” in Bears. He ran up the left hash, was touched once and bounced the return back up the right sideline, where he outran the Saints for his seventh career kick return score.
Patterson — who did not to talk to reporters after the game — is now one off the modern career NFL record, shared by Josh Cribbs and Leon Washington.
Patterson was the first person to return a kickoff for a touchdown at Soldier Field since, well Cordarrelle Patterson. He did with the Patriots last year. No Bears player had returned a kickoff for a score since Chris Williams in 2014. The last one to do it at home: Devin Hester in 2011.
“We knew we were playing a good return team,” Saints coach Sean Payton said. “They had the kickoff return. That kind of brought the game closer.”
Patterson reached 20.29 mph on the return, per NFL Next Gen Stats. He’s run that fast on special teams three times since the start of last season.