Jay Cutler found Brandon Manumaleuna on a 7-yard touchdown pass with 8:46 remaining in the game to provide the visiting Chicago Bears with a fifth straight win, 24-20 over the Detroit Lions on Sunday.
The win was critical for Chicago (9-3), which is battling Green Bay in the NFC North and end the season against New England, at Minnesota, against the New York Jets and then at Green Bay.
Cutler’s game-winning pass was set up when Lions quarterback Drew Stanton couldn’t connect with Nate Burleson in the left flat on a fourth-and-1 from the Chicago 41 earlier in the fourth.
Cutler completed 21 of 26 passes for 234 yards with a touchdown and no interceptions but he was sacked four times.
Stanton, subbing for an injured Shaun Hill (broken finger), completed 16 of 24 passes for 178 yards with one touchdown passing and another rushing. He hit Calvin Johnson on a 46-yard touchdown pass with 43 seconds left in the first half to give Detroit (2-10) a 17-13 lead.
Chicago scored the last 10 points of the game, as Devin Hester broke a 37-yard punt return that set up a career-long 54-yard field goal by Robbie Gould that cut the Bears' deficit to 20-17 with 2:46 left in the third.