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Ranking top 10 Bears games from past decade

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The NFL is graciously offering free access to NFL Game Pass during the COVID-19 pandemic, giving fans stuck in their homes with no live sports to watch on television plenty of entertainment options.

In addition to award-winning film series such as "Hard Knocks" and "A Football Life," fans can view complete games or condensed 45-minute versions of NFL contests dating back to 2009. For Bears fans looking to relive some of their team's greatest games, I've formulated my list of the top 10 contests from the past decade that I would most like to re-watch:

(1) Bears 35, Seahawks 24
Jan. 16, 2011
Soldier Field

In the first postseason game of his career, Jay Cutler passed for two touchdowns and ran for two more in leading the Bears to a divisional playoff win at snowy Soldier Field. On his first pass attempt of the game, Cutler hit Greg Olsen for a 58-yard touchdown. Cutler's second rushing TD, a 9-yarder, gave the Bears a commanding 28-0 lead in the third quarter.

Cutler passed for 274 yards and rushed for 43 yards. Olsen caught three passes for 113 yards. Matt Forte rushed for 80 yards on 25 carries and had three receptions for 54 yards.

The Seahawks became the NFL's first division winner with a losing record (7-9). But they had advanced to face the Bears after beating the defending Super Bowl-champion Saints in Seattle. That game featured Marshawn Lynch's remarkable 67-yard "beast mode" touchdown run.

(2) Bears 40, Vikings 14
Dec. 20, 2010
TCF Bank Stadium

Cutler passed for three touchdowns and Devin Hester set an NFL record with his 14th career kick return TD to help the Bears clinch the NFC North championship on a snowy Monday night in Minnesota. Hester's 64-yard punt return TD gave the Bears a 27-7 lead early in the third quarter. He also caught a 15-yard touchdown pass from Cutler.

Brett Favre started for the Vikings, even though he had been ruled out of the game earlier in the week with an injury. He was forced to leave the contest in the second quarter when he was slammed to the ground on a sack by Corey Wootten. It turned out to be Favre's final NFL play.

The game was played outdoors in the University of Minnesota's stadium after the roof of the Metrodome had collapsed a few days earlier during a snowstorm.

(3) Bears 24, Packers 17
Dec. 16, 2018
Soldier Field

The Bears clinched the NFC North title, earned a playoff berth for the first time since 2010, snapped an eight-game home losing streak to Green Bay and eliminated the Packers from playoff contention. Mitchell Trubisky completed 20 of 28 passes for 235 yards with two touchdowns, no interceptions and a 120.4 passer rating. Defensively, Khalil Mack registered 2.5 of the Bears' five sacks of Aaron Rodgers.

The Bears snapped a 14-14 tie on Trubisky's 13-yard touchdown strike to Trey Burton with 10:16 left in the fourth quarter and extended their lead to 24-14 on Cody Parkey's 24-yard field goal with 6:43 to play. The Packers closed the gap to 24-17 on Mason Crosby's 45-yard field goal with :11 remaining. But Allen Robinson recovered Crosby's ensuing onside kick to ice the win—and the Bears' first division crown since 2010.

(4) Bears 15, Rams 6
Dec. 9, 2018
Soldier Field

The Bears defense aced its stiffest test of the season, dominating an explosive Rams offense. The unit did not allow a touchdown, produced four interceptions and a safety, and held NFL leading rusher Todd Gurley to a season-low 28 yards on 11 carries. The defense constantly harassed quarterback Jared Goff, who posted a career-low 19.1 passer rating.

The Rams entered the contest with an NFL-best 11-1 record, averaging 34.9 points and 439.9 yards per game. The defense's performance was even more impressive considering that the Rams started possessions at the Bears' 15, 49 and 27 following turnovers.

The only touchdown of the game was scored on a gadget play dubbed "Santa's Sleigh" on which Trubisky tossed a 2-yard TD pass to eligible lineman Bradley Sowell. The Bears had 10 linemen on the field—Sowell, five offensive linemen and four defensive linemen—along with Trubisky.

(5) Bears 48, Buccaneers 10
Sept. 30, 2018
Soldier Field

Trubisky threw six touchdown passes to fuel the rout, tying for the second most in Bears history behind only Hall of Famer Sid Luckman's seven TDs in a 1943 win over the Giants. In staking the Bears to a 38-3 halftime lead, Trubisky became the first player in franchise history to throw five touchdown passes in a half.

In the first two quarters, Trubisky completed 14 of 18 passes for 289 yards and a perfect 158.3 passer rating. He threw TD passes of 39 yards to Burton, 14 yards to Robinson, 9 yards to Tarik Cohen, 20 yards to Joshua Bellamy and 3 yards Taylor Gabriel.

On their five first-half touchdown drives, the Bears ran just one third-down play and scored in an elapsed 2:40, 3:34, 2:34, 1:46 and 3:12. Trubisky picked up in the second half right where he left off in the first, rifling a 3-yard TD pass to Gabriel to increase the Bears' lead to 45-3.

(6) Bears 51, Titans 20
Nov. 4, 2012
LP Field

The Bears set a team-record by scoring 28 points in the opening period as the offense, defense and special teams all produced touchdowns. Brandon Marshall finished with nine receptions for 122 yards and three TDs, Forte rushed for 103 yards on 12 attempts, and Cutler completed 19 of 26 passes for 229 yards and three TDs, no interceptions and a 138.1 passer rating.

But the ball-hawking defense was the star of the game, generating five takeaways and returning its seventh interception of the season for a touchdown. Charles Tillman led the charge, forcing a career-high four fumbles, three of which the Bears recovered.

In the first quarter, the defense generated three takeaways, highlighted by Brian Urlacher's 46-yard interception return for a touchdown; and two Northwestern products teamed up as Sherrick McManis blocked a punt that Wootton returned five yards for his first NFL TD.

(7) Bears 17, Packers 13
Nov. 26, 2015
Lambeau Field

Stingy all night, the Bears defense forced Rodgers to throw four straight incomplete passes from the 8-yard line in the final minute of the Thanksgiving game, clinching the win when he failed to connect with receiver Davante Adams in the end zone with :22 remaining.

The defense allowed just one touchdown and generated two takeaways, including a Tracy Porter interception at the Green Bay 45 on a pass intended for Adams with 3:19 left in the fourth quarter. Rodgers completed 22 of 43 passes for 202 yards with one TD, one interception and a 62.4 passer rating.

Cutler completed 19 of 31 passes for 200 yards with 1 TD, no interceptions and a 90.8 passer rating. He operated a Bears offense that did not commit a turnover while playing in a steady rainstorm throughout the game. Alshon Jeffery caught seven passes for 90 yards.

(8) Bears 45, Cowboys 28
Dec. 9, 2013
Soldier Field

The temperature at kickoff of the Monday night contest was eight degrees with a wind chill of minus-nine. But the Bears appeared unfazed by the brutal cold, especially on offense, scoring on all eight of their possessions before taking a knee on the final of the game.

Josh McCown accounted for all five Bears touchdowns. He completed 27 of 36 passes for 348 yards and set career highs with four TDs and a 141.9 passer rating. He also scrambled for a 7-yard score. McCown spread the wealth, throwing touchdown passes to Forte, Jeffery, Earl Bennett and Michael Bush.

After Tony Romo's 10-yard touchdown pass to Jason Witten tied the game 14-14 midway through the second quarter, the Bears scored the next 28 points, ultimately taking a 42-14 lead on McCown's fourth TD pass of the game, a 17-yarder to Bush early in the fourth period.

(9) Bears 23, Steelers 17 (OT)
Sept. 24, 2017
Soldier Field

The Bears were fueled by a dominant running game that produced 222 yards. Jordan Howard rushed for 138 yards and two touchdowns on 23 carries, including a game-winning 19-yard TD run with 8:27 remaining in overtime.

Howard's touchdown capped the Bears' first possession of overtime and came two plays after Cohen had apparently ended the game with a dazzling 73-yard TD run. But after a replay review, it was determined that he had stepped out of bounds at the Pittsburgh 37. Cohen rushed for 78 yards on 12 carries in the game.

The Bears took a 17-7 lead by scoring 10 points in the final :43 of the first half on Mike Glennon's 2-yard touchdown pass to Adam Shaheen and Connor Barth's 24-yard field goal. But the Steelers rallied in the second half to force overtime.

(10) Bears 34, Cowboys 18
Oct. 1, 2012
Cowboys Stadium

The Bears dominated on both sides of the ball in a memorable Monday night win in Dallas. The defense intercepted five Romo passes, returning two for touchdowns, while Cutler threw for 275 yards with two touchdowns and no interceptions. Cutler's 140.1 passer rating was exactly 80 points better than Romo's 60.1.

Tillman and Lance Briggs both returned interceptions for touchdowns (a feat they duplicated six days later in a 41-3 rout of the Jaguars in Jacksonville). Cutler threw TD passes of 34 yards to Hester and 31 yards to Marshall.

Former Bears quarterback Kyle Orton tossed a 5-yard touchdown pass to Witten and a two-point conversion pass to receiver Dez Bryant to make it 34-18 with :34 remaining. But by then, Cowboys Stadium had already been echoing with chants of "let's go Bears" that emanated from delighted Bears fans who represented their team in enemy territory.

Senior writer Larry Mayer ranks the top 10 Bears games of the past decade.

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Larry Mayer

Bears Senior Writer

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