CHICAGO -- Devin Hester was performing somersaults. Matt Forte was running wild, too. One thing the Chicago Bears weren't doing was breathing easy.
Hester set an NFL record with his 11 th punt return for a touchdown, Forte ran for a career - high 205 yards and Chicago, 2 - 2, beat Cam Newton and the Carolina Panthers 34 - 29 on Sunday.
Hester had earlier set up a touchdown run by Forte with a 73 - yard kickoff return before he ran back a line - drive punt 69 yards in the second quarter to move ahead of Eric Metcalf on the all - time list.
His three somersaults in the end zone after the touchdown that made it 24 - 10 got him flagged for unsportsmanlike conduct, but the celebration was a little early.
The Panthers, 1 - 3, cut the lead to four points at halftime and had their chances to go ahead in the second half but came up short, spoiling coach Ron Rivera's return to Soldier Field while wasting another big performance by Newton. The NFL's third - leading passer coming in, he threw for 374 yards and a touchdown and ran for two more. Carolina wound up with 543 total yards.
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