Bears handle Lions

Chicago 13, Detroit 7
Detroit running back Joique Bell (center) fumbles near the goal line in the loss to Chicago on Monday. The Bears forced three turnovers and moved to 5-1 on the year.

CHICAGO — Jay Cutler threw a 7-yard touchdown pass to Brandon Marshall and the Chicago Bears beat the Detroit Lions 13-7 on Monday night.


The Bears solidified their spot at the top of the NFC North, while the last-place Lions suffered their fourth loss in five games.

Jay Cutler completed 16 of 31 passes for 150 yards and a touchdown as the Bears moved to 5-1, one game behind the Atlanta Falcons for the best record in the conference.

Stafford, a former Georgia star, completed 28 of 46 passes for 261 yards. He had a touchdown and a interception.

Stafford has struggled at Soldier Field. As a rookie, Stafford injured his knee in a loss. In 2010, he separated his right shoulder on a hit from Julius Peppers. Last year, he threw four interceptions in a loss while playing with a broken finger.

Midway through the second quarter, the Bears had a scare when Cutler was slammed to the ground on a sack by Ndamukong Suh. Cutler was on the ground for a few minutes and was attended to by a team trainer before jogging off the field. He was replaced by Jason Campbell for just one play. Cutler threw an incomplete pass as the Bears went three and out.

But Cutler didn’t return on the Bears’ next possession.

After Detroit’s Mikel Leshoure lost a fumble to Peppers on the Chicago 18, Cutler was replaced again by Campbell as Cutler was getting his ribs evaluated in the locker room.

The Lions fell to 2-4, putting their season in peril. They still are last in the division, 2½ games behind Chicago with Minnesota and Green Bay ahead of them.

Lions cornerback Bill Bentley was inactive, leaving Detroit without their top two right cornerbacks.

Jacob Lacey had already been ruled out after suffering a concussion last week against Philadelphia, and with Bentley out after being listed as doubtful, Jonte Green started at right cornerback.