By Dan Durkin-

(CBS) — It only took him 10 tries, but Bears defensive end Jared Allen got his first win at Soldier Field, against his former team nonetheless, in Chicago’s 21-13 win against Minnesota.

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Sunday was easily Allen’s best performance since signing with the Bears this offseason. Allen regularly got the best of Vikings left tackle Matt Kalil, registering three hits and one quarterback sack.

“It’s huge,” Allen said after the Bears improved to 4-6. “We needed it. It was time to get some confidence and get back on the right track. I thought we did a great job of playing team ball today.”

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After playing back-to-back games against two future Hall-of-Famers — Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers — getting rookie Teddy Bridgewater was a necessary reprieve for a Bears defense that had allowed 106 points and 11 passing touchdowns in the past three games.

All game, Bridgewater was indecisive with his reads, dropping his eye level in the pocket and sometimes seeing ghosts in the pocket that led to errant passes. On the day, Bridgewater finished 18-for-28 for 158 yards one touchdown and a crucial interception in the end zone (picked by Ryan Mundy) that ended the game.

“We didn’t do anything special,” Allen said. “We just played aggressive, and I really think we have to focus on doing that. I think, for starters, we were able to shut down the run game early and force him into throwing the ball. Our backfield did a heck of a job covering those guys. And, even when we didn’t sack him, we had him off his spot, off his mark, moving in the pocket. We didn’t allow him to get out and get comfortable. So, guys just played well off of each other today.”

Trestman on end-of-half clock management

Bears coach Marc Trestman has 26 games under his belt in charge of an NFL squad, but his clock management decisions — particularly at the end of the first half — continue to befuddle observers.

On the Vikings’ last drive of the first half, the Bears used two timeouts, leaving them with one to work with when they got the ball back at their own 26-yard line with 1:05 remaining in the half. The Bears then proceeded to run a draw play, let 41 seconds run off the clock, run another draw, then chose to use their final timeout.

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Trestman’s explanation of the situation brought little clarity about what was going through his head.

“We thought we would put ourselves into position to get a field goal,” Trestman said. “That’s the way we went about it. But knowing we were able to move the football, we didn’t want to put our team at risk being backed up. We were still at the 25 or 30-yard line to start.”

So, which was it coach? Did you want to kick the field goal, or play it conservatively?

Trestman on fourth-and-1 decision

Up 14-10 at the start of the second half, the Bears drove 82 yards to get to the Vikings’ 1-yard line. Facing a fourth-and-1 decision, Trestman elected to go for it, rather than kick the chip shot field goal.

The Bears ran a play they hadn’t shown before, an empty set quarterback sweep with Jay Cutler left to the short side of the field, but it didn’t work out. Not only was Cutler stopped short, he took a huge, unlegislated hit.

“It was a play we had prepared for over the last couple of weeks, actually,” Trestman said. “We wanted to get out ahead, and it didn’t work. But there is no reason why it couldn’t have worked. We just didn’t put it all together.”

Clearly, any play that’s drawn up on a whiteboard can work. The problem lies in the fact you have to actually snap the ball and execute. The Bears got out-leveraged to the sideline, tackle Jermon Bushrod didn’t seal the edge and Cutler was stopped short.

“When we snapped it, I felt good about it,” Cutler said. “It’s just how quickly can he go over the top. He got over the top pretty quickly. We were two-on-one out there, with Bush (Jermon Bushrod) so they made a good play there.”

After missing a field goal earlier in the game, conventional thought was the Bears would kick the field goal and take the points. They didn’t, and it kept the Vikings within striking distance until the end of the game.

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Dan Durkin covers the Bears for CBSChicago.com and is a frequent contributor to 670 The Score. Follow him on Twitter at @djdurkin.