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Can Bears salvage season with win over Pats?

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Their jeckyl and hyde season on the brink with a 3-4 record amid locker-room tensions, the Chicago Bears try to steer themselves right with a win at New England on Sunday. If it happens, it would mark just the fourth loss at home for the Patriots in the last ten seasons.

Here are three keys to pave the way for a Bears victory:

1. Ride Matt Forte…. The Bears unwillingness to fully commit to the ground game is troubling given Matt Forte’s effectiveness. Chicago faces a New England defensive unit decimated by injuries, which should portend a favorable matchup. Forte’s lack of use in last Sunday’s loss to Miami continued a puzzling trend by the Bears to feature a quick-stirke passing game rather than rely on Forte’s versatility.

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Five things from Bears post-mortem

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Here are five dissapointing items from the Chicago Bears 27-14 home loss to the Miami Dolphins Sunday:

1. Home skid continues….the Bears have lost four straight games at Soldier Field, their longest losing streak since 2002.  Somehow the energy isn’t there after kickoff. While guard Kyle Long can appeal that the “fans aren’t loud enough on third down”, truth is that the Bears defense fails to generate any enthusiasm or big plays.

Also, freqently the Bears are playing from behind, making it difficult to generate energy or enthusiasm from the home crowd.

2. Turnovers….the Bears lost the turnover battle, 3-0. In all three home losses this season, they’ve committed crucial mistakes that have turned the game around, witness QB Jay Cutler’s ill-advised throw that Buffalo’s Kyle Williams picked when the Bears were driving in the opener or the two interceptions thrown in the Packers contest.

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Bears o-line back together

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For the first time prior to the regular season opener against Buffalo, the Chicago Bears starting Street free agent signee Michael Ola has been a lifesaver for the Bears, splitting time at both left guard and tackle.offensive line practiced together Thursday in preparation for Sunday’s home game with the Miami Dolphins.

Injuries caused the Bears to mix and match starters after center Roberto Garza and guard Matt Slauson sustained high ankle sprains in the opener. Both recently returned to the field, but starting left tackle Jermon Bushrod missed the last two contests with an ankle and knee issue.

Even this week, the unit underwent some change. Right tackle Jordan Mills missed Wednesday’s workout, but returned to action Thursday after suffering some pain in his surgically repaired right foot that was broken in last year’s season finale. “It felt great,” Mills said after practice. “It was a little painful the last two or three days.”

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