The 2001 Chicago Bears season was their 82nd regular season and 23rd postseason completed in the National Football League. The club posted a surprising 13-3 record under head coach Dick Jauron en route to an NFC Central title and the number two seed in the NFC. The Bears, led by Jim Miller, seemed like a team of destiny, with five comeback wins during the season, including two straight improbable wins where safety Mike Brown returned an interception for the game-winning touchdown in overtime. However, it was not to be as the Bears were upset at home by the Philadelphia Eagles 33-19 in the NFC Divisional playoffs.
The Bears surprised most with a breakout campaign in 2001. After losing the opening game of the season to the Super Bowl XXXV Champion Baltimore Ravens 17-6 on the road, the Bears won their next six games, starting with a 17-10 victory against their division rival, the Minnesota Vikings in the Bears' home-opener. They carried their momentum through the Week 3 Bye and won on the road against the Atlanta Falcons (31-3).
The Bears returned home and won against the Arizona Cardinals 20-13. After a road shutout of the Cincinnati Bengals 24-0 the Bears played three home games. The first two games of this stretch were back-to-back overtime wins, first against the San Francisco 49ers (37-31), then against the Cleveland Browns (27-21). Both times safety Mike Brown capped remarkable comebacks (the Bears trailed 28-9 in the third quarter against San Francisco, and 21-7 with seconds remaining against Cleveland) by returning an interception in overtime for a touchdown.
Unfortunately the Green Bay Packers (their historic rival) buried the Bears' win streak at home, 20-12. The Bears rebounded, winning their next three games. They first defeated then-division rival Tampa Bay 27-24. A season sweep of the Vikings (13-6) followed, then the Bears defended their turf against the Detroit Lions 13-10.
The Bears then traveled to Lambeau Field and were swept by the Packers 17-7. Once again the Bears rebounded, winning their last four games, against the Buccaneers at home (27-3), the Redskins (20-15), the Lions on the road (24-0), and then their season-finale against the Jacksonville Jaguars (33-13). The Bears ended the regular season with a 13-3 record.
The Bears entered the playoffs with the league's top defense (allowing a league-low 203 points), an offense ranked 11th in points scored (338 points), and a plus-13 turnover differential (4th in the league), but their magical season ended on a sour note, losing 33-19 to the Philadelphia Eagles in the divisional round of the NFC playoffs at Soldier Field.