Mitchell Trubisky threw six touchdown passes to lead the Bears to a 48-10 rout of the Buccaneers Sunday at Soldier Field. Here are three things that stood out in the game:
(1) Trubisky didn't just have a breakout performance and a career game, he had one of the best outings by a quarterback in Bears history.
The second-year pro started red-hot and remained on fire, becoming the first Bears player to throw five touchdown passes in a half. His six TD passes in the game were tied for the second most in franchise history behind only Hall of Famer Sid Luckman's seven TD passes on Nov. 14, 1943 in a 56-7 win over the New York Giants.
"I couldn't have done it without my teammates," Trubisky said. "I never set out to break any records or do anything like that. It was just a great team win, great team execution."
After throwing for seven touchdowns on 330 attempts last season, Trubisky tossed six TDs on his first 22 passes Sunday. In the process, the second pick in the 2017 draft set career highs not only with six TDs but with 354 yards and a 154.6 passer rating. It was the highest passer rating by a Bears quarterback since Dec. 7, 1980 when Vince Evans posted a perfect 158.3 in a 61-7 victory over the Packers at Soldier Field.
After completing three passes of at least 30 yards in the first three games of the season, Trubisky connected on gains of 47, 39, 35, 33, 31 and 30 yards Sunday. He displayed excellent accuracy, touch and decision-making. Trubisky also rushed for 53 yards on three carries, including runs of 26 yards and 23 yards, both of which set up touchdowns.
(2) Trubisky wasn't the only one who excelled Sunday. As a unit, the Bears offense delivered a record-breaking performance.
An offense that seemingly was on the verge of a breakout performance exploded Sunday, generating 38 points and 400 yards in the first half alone. On their five touchdown drives in the first two quarters, the Bears needed only one third-down play and scored in a rapid 2:40, 3:34, 2:34, 1:46 and 3:12.
"Everything coach [Matt] Nagy was calling was working, and we just kept it rolling," Trubisky said. "It was the O-line. They gave me time. They were moving guys. We got the run game going, and I was just back there, and I was seeing it well, just staying calm in the pocket, and guys were getting open. It was an awesome game plan. We just did what we did in practice this week, and it just carried over."
The 48 points were the most the Bears have tallied in a game in which they did not score a touchdown on defense or special teams since Nov. 25, 1962 when they crushed the Colts 57-0 in Baltimore.
"They were running good routes," Nagy said. "We were making good throws, had the protection. It's amazing what can happen when you just go out there and you just kind of cut it loose, and you don't think too much. And that's everybody; that's not just the players but the coaches too."
(3) Though overshadowed by the offense, the Bears defense continued its dominance in shutting down the NFL's No. 1-ranked offense.
The Buccaneers entered Sunday's contest averaging a league-best 473.3 total yards and 400.7 passing yards while scoring 34.0 points per game. But Tampa Bay mustered only 311 total yards, 251 passing yards and 10 points against the Bears.
The defense generated three takeaways and four sacks and now leads the NFL with 18 sacks and eight forced fumbles. The unit's eight interceptions in four games equal the number of picks they accumulated in each of the previous three seasons.
The defense was once again led by outside linebacker Khalil Mack, who produced a strip/sack for the fourth time in as many games. He's the first NFL player to accomplish that feat since the Colts' Robert Mathis in 2005. In addition, Mack hit the arm of quarterback Jameis Winston, causing a wobbly throw that was intercepted by outside linebacker Aaron Lynch.
Safety Eddie Jackson and inside linebacker Danny Trevathan also picked off passes for the Bears, who enter their bye week with a 3-1 record atop the NFC North.
"You get better or you get worse," Trevathan said. "In this situation, we are getting better. There's no complacency with this defense. We're a good defense. We know that. [Our mentality is], 'Let's go ahead and get off this field, and no one is going to come in here and put on a show on our field.'"
Prime Photos: Bears vs. Buccaneers 9.30.18
Bears photographer Jacob Funk selected his best photos from the Bears game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Soldier Field.