Cutler helps himself with fancy footwork

The run blocking was below average, and the Bears clearly missed Lance Louis after he was injured. Gabe Carimi did well, though, considering the circumstances. He also made some nice blocks at tight end early in the game.

New right tackle Jonathan Scott played like a veteran and was pretty consistent. Fill-in guard Edwin Williams had a nice game.

Wide receivers

Grade: 7.5

This was a gritty performance by Marshall and company. Most of their work was in the middle of the field, and Marshall and Earl Bennett helped others by blocking with intensity.

Marshall's physical play is ideal as cold weather sets in. By breaking tackles, he gained 7 yards after contact on one play and 12 on another.

He also was fierce on passes in traffic, at one point coming up with a catch when four defenders were within a step and a half of him. He outwrestled Winfield for a ball they both appeared to catch.

Running backs

Grade: 5.5

The long run of the day was an 8-yarder, but both Bush and Matt Forte ran physically. On Bush's second touchdown run, he dragged linebacker Chad Greenway and safety Jamarca Sanford into the end zone. Forte plowed over safety Harrison Smith on his way to converting a third-and-5.

Tight ends

Grade: 5.5

That was a fine catch for a 13-yard touchdown by Spaeth, extending his arms and diving. Davis caught one but dropped two more.

Defensive line

Grade: 6.5

The front four put decent pressure on Vikings quarterback Christian Ponder but did not finish enough plays. They sacked him only twice, and the second sack was a coverage sack.

Defensive tackle Henry Melton sacked Ponder on the first play from scrimmage for a loss of 9 by putting a swim move on center John Sullivan and then sliding around guard Brandon Fusco.

Defensive ends Israel Idonije and Shea McClellin also stood out with consistent rush. They shared a sack, and Idonije had three pressures while McClellin had two.

Credit defensive tackle Nate Collins with forcing the throw that Chris Conte intercepted.

Julius Peppers was handled well by rookie tackle Matt Kalil, and Peppers had a minimal impact for the second straight game.

CHICAGO