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Bears looking for more of the same from Josh McCown

Bears coach Marc Trestman isn't going to ask quarterback Josh McCown to lift the team on his shoulders and carry them to a win over the Vikings Sunday in Minnesota.

"Josh has just got to continue at the level he's playing at," Trestman said. "He's got to be efficient, take care of the football and let the guys around him do what they need to to help move our football team."


Josh McCown will make his third straight start Sunday against the Vikings.
Filling in for injured starter Jay Cutler over the last five games, McCown has completed 97 of 148 passes for 1,106 yards with seven touchdowns, one interception and a 100.8 passer rating that ranks seventh in the NFL among quarterbacks with at least 100 attempts.

"I've been pleased with his performance level," Trestman said. "He knows there are things he can do to get better. We've talked about those things and trusting his reads and progressions and just letting the guys around him do the work.

"We're always going to try to do better on specific things; specific passing principles, specific footwork. That's what he can continue to work at, the little things and details that go into the makeup and success of a play on multiple levels, the fundamentals and the challenges of getting the ball to the right guy in the passing game."

In last Sunday's loss to the Rams, McCown set a Bears single-game record with 36 completions, eclipsing the mark that was established by Jim Miller in 1999 and matched by Brian Griese in 2007.

McCown has a multitude of weapons at his disposal. Receivers Brandon Marshall (74 catches for 945 yards and nine TDs) and Alshon Jeffery (58-860-3) have combined for the most yards (1,805) of any receiving duo in the NFL and are the only two teammates who both have over 800 yards.

Running back Matt Forte has caught 56 passes for 414 yards and 1 TD, while tight end Martellus Bennett has 46 receptions for 531 yards and 5 touchdowns.

The last time McCown started a game against the Vikings was the 2011 season finale in Minnesota, when he completed 15 of 25 passes for 160 yards in a 17-13 victory.

Other Bears starters on offense in that contest included running back Kahlil Bell, receiver Roy Williams and tight end Kellen Davis. They've been replaced by three playmakers in Forte (who missed that game with an injury), Marshall and Bennett, respectively.

The offensive line in the 2011 season finale consisted of left tackle J'Marcus Webb, left guard Edwin Williams, center Roberto Garza, right guard Chris Spencer and right tackle Lance Louis.

Only Garza remains from that group. The others have been replaced by left tackle Jermon Bushrod, left guard Matt Slauson, right guard Kyle Long and right tackle Jordan Mills.

"No disrespect to guys we had, but we didn't have guys that were an elite player at their position," McCown said. "The biggest difference is the way we built this offensive line and the way that they're playing, so I think all the way around it is just a better situation, a better group of guys."

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