Josh McCown threw a touchdown pass and Charles Tillman returned an interception for a score as the Chicago Bears salvaged a .500 finish with a 17-13 victory over the host Minnesota Vikings on Sunday.
One of the few games on the schedule with little meaning in relation to the playoffs, the Bears got just enough from McCown and put the rest on the defense, which forced a pair of turnovers and collected two sacks and eight tackles for a loss.
Chicago (8-8) was in line for a playoff spot after a 7-3 start following a Week 11 win over the San Diego Chargers. An injury to quarterback Jay Cutler in that game, however, doomed the season and Caleb Hanie and McCown lost five straight to fall off the pace.
The Bears trailed 10-0 early after the first quarter on Sunday before storming back.
McCown found Roy Williams for a 22-yard touchdown early in the second quarter and Tillman picked off rookie Christian Ponder and returned the ball 22 yards for a score on the ensuing possession.
Minnesota (3-13) went to Joe Webb at quarterback but could not get anything going against the Chicago defense.
Robbie Gould’s 27-yard field goal with 10:22 left capped the scoring for the Bears.