1934 Chicago Bears season

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1934 Chicago Bears season
Head coach George Halas
Home field Wrigley Field
Results
Record 13–0
Division place 1st NFL Western
Playoff finish Lost NFL Championship
Timeline
Previous season Next season
< 1933 1935 >

The 1934 Chicago Bears season was the team's 15th regular season and 3rd postseason completed in the National Football League. The club posted an unprecedented 13–0 record in the second year of George Halas's second tenure.

The season began with startling success, as the Bears reeled off nine straight wins in which they scored 20 or more points each game while allowing more than 7 points only twice. The last four wins were more difficult, including a tough win over the Giants in New York and back to back home and away close victories over the Detroit Lions in that franchise's first year in Detroit. The Bears outscored opponents 286–86, and became the first team to go unbeaten and untied in the NFL's regular season.

The Bears won the NFL Western Division title for the second straight year and met the NFL Eastern Division champion New York Giants once again in the NFL Championship game. The Bears were denied perfection as the Giants went on to win what would become known as the "Sneakers Game".

Season highlights[edit]

The 1934 Bears were without a doubt the best offensive team in NFL history to that point. They scored 37 touchdowns in 13 games, with 12 different players reaching the end zone during the year. Bronko Nagurski rushed for 586 yards on 123 carries and 8 touchdowns while blocking for a record-setting performance by rookie Beattie Feathers. Feathers, who played in only 11 games due to a shoulder injury, rushed for 1,004 yards and 8 touchdowns. He was not only the NFL's first official 1,000-yard rusher,[1] but he performed this feat 12 years before it would be repeated (by Steve Van Buren in 1946) in an era when all players "went both ways" and many backs on a team shared rushing, receiving, and passing duties. The Bear offense was far more, however, than Nagurski and Feathers running the ball. Red Grange, Carl Brumbaugh, Bill Hewitt, and Gene Ronzani each caught at least 2 touchdown passes, four different players passed for 3 or more each, and "Automatic" Jack Manders led the league with 10 field goals. The club's line got even better than before with Walt Kiesling joining Lyman, Musso, and Kopcha on the best interior unit in football. The Bears breezed into the Polo Grounds in New York as heavy favorites to win their third straight NFL title.

Championship Game[edit]

For more details on this topic, see NFL Championship Game, 1934.

The Bears again met the NFL Eastern Division champion New York Giants in the NFL Championship game, this time in New York. The game was played at the Polo Grounds on a very slick, ice covered field. The Bears were also without star halfback Feathers and All-Pro guard Kopcha. Both teams struggled with the field conditions but the Bears were able to post a 13–3 lead early in the third quarter. The Giants had famously changed their cleats to sneakers at halftime and this gave them an advantage in footing as well as a psychological advantage over the Bears. 27 unanswered New York points ensued, and the Giants won their second NFL title and first championship game 30–13. Thus, the Bears were denied a perfect season.

Future Hall of Fame Players[edit]

Other Leading Players[edit]

Schedule[edit]

Date Opponent Location Result Score
Sep 23 Green Bay Packers East Stadium Win 24–10
Sep. 30 Cincinnati Reds Crosley Field Win 21–3
Oct. 7 Brooklyn Dodgers Ebbets Field Win 21–7
Oct 10 Pittsburgh Pirates Forbes Field Win 28–0
Oct 14 Chicago Cardinals Wrigley Field Win 20–0
Oct 21 Cincinnati Reds Wrigley Field Win 41–7
Oct 28 Green Bay Packers Wrigley Field Win 27–14
Nov 4 New York Giants Wrigley Field Win 27–7
Nov 11 Boston Redskins Fenway Park Win 21–0
Nov 18 New York Giants Polo Grounds Win 10–9
Nov 25 Chicago Cardinals Wrigley Field Win 17–14
Nov. 29 Detroit Lions Titan Stadium Win 19–16
Dec. 2 Detroit Lions Wrigley Field Win 10–7

Standings[edit]

NFL Western Division
W L T PCT DIV PF PA STK
Chicago Bears 13 0 0 1.000 8–0 286 86 W13
Detroit Lions 10 3 0 .769 5–3 238 59 L3
Green Bay Packers 7 6 0 .538 4–5 156 112 W1
Chicago Cardinals 5 6 0 .455 4–5 80 84 W1
St. Louis Gunners 1 2 0 .333 0–2 27 61 L2
Cincinnati Reds 0 8 0 .000 0–6 10 243 L8

Note: Tie games were not officially counted in the standings until 1972.

References[edit]

  1. ^ NFL; National Football League (July 1, 2001). The Official NFL 2001 Record and Fact Book. Workman Publishing. p. 280. ISBN 978-0-7611-2480-1.