By Larry Fine
EAST RUTHERFORD, New Jersey (Reuters) - The New York Giants used a ferocious pass rush to knock out quarterback Jay Cutler and tame the Chicago Bears with a 17-3 win Sunday that left the NFL with only one undefeated team.
New York improved to 2-2 and Chicago dropped to 3-1. The Bears' loss left the Kansas City Chiefs (3-0) as the NFL's only undefeated team.
"The defense played superbly," Giants coach Tom Coughlin told reporters. "It was very difficult for Chicago to get a first down and that's a team that last week battled a division rival in the Packers and were able to win."
The Bears had just six first downs in the game and were outgained by 372 yards to 110.
Chicago coach Lovie Smith said the Bears' offense was simply overmatched.
"Offensively, when you get pressured like that it's tough to do anything, passing or running," he said. "The bright spot is this is just one game. It only counts as one loss."
Despite the defensive dominance that limited Chicago to 22 yards of offense in the first half, the offensively inept Giants went into the intermission with only a 3-0 lead on a 22-yard first-quarter field goal by Lawrence Tynes.
New York engineered a solid touchdown drive in the third quarter, going 90 yards in eight plays highlighted by five runs by Ahmad Bradshaw for 43 yards, including a three-yard burst for a touchdown that made it 10-0.
A fumble by Brandon Jacobs gave Chicago the ball on the New York 29 yard line and the Bears turned the turnover into a 40-yard field goal by Robbie Gould to reduce the deficit to 10-3 early in the fourth quarter.
The Giants answered with a two-yard touchdown plunge by Jacobs following a 30-yard completion by Eli Manning to Hakeem Nicks to complete the scoring.
Bradshaw led the Giants attack with 129 yards rushing.
Even though the score was tight until the last touchdown, New York manhandled the Bears, treating former team stars honored on the night to some old fashioned Giants football.
"We got in good position, we had good speed on the edge, we gave them multiple looks and had success in one-on-one match-ups," Coughlin said about the pass rush.
"We came from the outside and up the middle and were able to consistently put pressure on the quarterback."
Third-string quarterback Caleb Hanie finished the game for the Bears after Todd Collins, who replaced Cutler to start the second half, was helped off the field after taking a brutal hit from behind by pass-rushing linebacker Michael Boley.
Defensive end and co-captain Justin Tuck registered three sacks to tie team mate Osi Umenyiora on the night.
"I feel very confident about this football team and the defense," Tuck said. "We're going to make some noise."
(Reporting by Larry Fine, Editing by John O'Brien)