It wasn’t easy, but eventually new Chicago Bears head coach Marc Trestman got his first NFL win.
The Bears erased an 11-point second-half deficit and took the lead for good with just over seven minutes remaining in the fourth quarter when Jay Cutler hit Brandon Marshall with a 19-yard touchdown pass to give the Bears a 24-21 victory.
Cincinnati started slowly when quarterback Andy Dalton was intercepted by Chris Tillman on the Bengals first drive. Seven plays later, Cutler gave the Bears a 7-0 lead when he connected with Martellus Bennett with an eight-yard touchdown pass.
After that though it was all Bengals as the Dalton to A.J. Green combination got hot.
Dalton led the Bengals on a 97-yard drive to tie the game, culminating with a two-yard touchdown pass to Green.
That duo wasn’t finished as they gave the Bengals a 14-7 lead when they hooked up for a 45-yard scoring strike. On the day, Green caught nine passes for 162 yards and the two touchdowns.
Robbie Gould cut the Bengals lead to 14-10 at the half with a 58-yard field goal, but Cincinnati stretched the lead to 11 midway through the third quarter when Benjarvis Green-Ellis punched it in from five yards out.
The Bears cut that lead to 21-17 early in the fourth on a Matt forte one-yard touchdown run and then the game changed when Tim Jennings jarred the ball from Mohamed Sanu following a reception and made the recovery.
Chicago took over at its 19 and eight plays later Cutler then found Marshall, who caught eight passes for 104 yards, in the front corner of the end zone for a 19-yard touchdown, giving Chicago a 24-21 lead, en route to winning their fifth consecutive season opener.
The Bengals will try and get back on track next week when they host the Pittsburgh Steelers Monday night, while the Bears will look to start the season 2-0 when they host the Minnesota Vikings on Sunday.