GLENDALE, Ariz. (AP) – Even on a very bad night, the Chicago Bears found a way to stay unbeaten.

They can thank their defense, punt returner Devin Hester and Arizona kicker Neil Rackers for that.

Chicago, down 20-0 at the half, returned two fumbles for touchdowns, then Devin Hester returned a punt 83 yards for a touchdown with 2:58 remaining and the Bears (6-0) overcame six turnovers by Rex Grossman to beat the Cardinals 24-23 Monday night.

Rackers, who connected from 41, 28 and 29 yards, missed a 41-yarder to the left with 53 seconds left for what would have been the game winner for Arizona (1-5).

After Grossman threw his fourth interception, the Cardinals were trying to use up time.

But Brian Urlacher stripped the ball from Edgerrin James and Charles Tillman scooped it up for a 40-yard return to cut Arizona’s lead to 23-17 with five minutes left.

On their next possession, the Cardinals were forced to punt. Hester caught the ball, broke a few arm tackles and sprinted upfield, scoring his second punt return for a touchdown this season and giving Chicago the lead for the first time all night.

It was the third time Arizona had blown a late lead at home this season. Similar collapses occurred against St. Louis and Kansas City.

Rookie quarterback Matt Leinart, making his second NFL start, threw for two first-quarter touchdowns while the Cardinals shook up Grossman. The Bears’ QB lost two fumbles, was intercepted four times and struggled to hit receivers when he did manage to get the ball cleanly away, going 14-for-37 for 148 yards.

AP-ES-10-17-06 0015EDT


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