It’s rivalry week. Green Bay Packers vs the Chicago Bears. The NFL’s oldest rivalry. There have been a total of 197 meetings between the two teams with Green Bay Packers leading series 97-94-6. This is probably the biggest game at Solider Field between the two teams in about 5 years, when the Packers rallied to beat the Bears and get in the playoffs. There is plenty on the line this time. A Chicago win will clinch the a division title for them. Chicago sports radio and fans are thinking this is their opportunity to stake claim to the NFC North and say the future runs through them. Meanwhile, in Green Bay, a win keeps there slim playoff hopes alive. No matter how the season goes, beating the Bears twice a season is an absolute must. We all remember the dramatic comeback in week 1, where Rodgers returned from injury and was superman in the second half. What does the 198th meeting between these two teams have in store us? Will the Bears be NFC North Champs at the end of the day? Will the Packers keep their slim playoff hops alive?
Here is the full recap:
The first quarter had the feel of a throwback Packers vs Bears game. hopes run the ball down the throat of the defense. Screen passes. As well as play-action and a few miss direction play. Hard defensive hits. The Packers are without Kenny Clark on the defensive side of the ball for today’s game. His absence was felt during the first quarter. The Packers and Bears swapped punts before Chicago went 60 yards in 9 plays for the score. Jordan Howard went up the middle untouched for the
Aaron Rodgers has already been sacked twice today. Both times it was on third down. The Packers continue to struggle with third down efficiency. The Packers had 3rd and 9 deep into Chicago and they couldn’t convert. He had Equanimeous St. Brown but with the safety in the middle St. Brown couldn’t take the route in as much as he and Rodgers would have liked and they just missed connecting. A missed opportunity here as the Packers had to settle for a field goal. Early in the second quarter, Khalil Mack continues to be a different maker for the Bears defense. This time he sacked Aaron Rodgers with his back side. The Packers offense continues to struggle. The Bears offense on the other hand, put together another scoring drive. They went 61 yards in 5 plays. Tarik Cohen started the drive off with a 22 yard run off the left side. Trubisky then found Josh Bellamy for 18 yard pass play. The drive was capped off by a 12 yard run by Cohen. The Packers got the ball back with just over 2 minutes remaining in the half and the ball on their own 20 yard line. The highlight for them was a 20 yard run by Jamaal Williams. Rodgers threw a hail mary into the end zone to Davante Adams, who almost came up with it as time expired but it ultimately fell incomplete. Overall, the first half showed the Packers offense continues to be stuck in neutral. Vic Fangio is mixing his coverages and Rodgers and Philbin have no answer. Rodgers has also been under pressure nearly every time he drops back. Packers 3 – Bears 14
As the second half got underway, the Packers announced that Aaron Jones would be out the rest of the game. Rodgers and Philbin came out of the locker room with a quick passing attack as it seemed to be working. Rodgers started out 4 for 4 on the drive. They were able to advance the ball to the Chicago 25 yard where the drive ended up stalling. Crosby did convert on the field goal. Mike Pettine’s defense continues to come through and be a strength of this Packers team. The defense forced the Bears to punt. Matt Nagy went to his bag of tricks and called a fake punt. Ron Zook and the Packers special teams were ready, stuffing the run attempt on fourth down. Getting the ball at midfield Rodgers went to work. On 3rd and 8, Rodgers hit Davante Adams for a 28 yard gain. On the very next play, Rodgers found Adams again, this time for 10 yard gain to the Chicago 10 yard line. Then it was Jamaal Williams turn, as he took the hand off of the right side for 10 yards. Philbin decides to go for the two-point
All tied up as we start the fourth quarter. The Bears at the Green Bay 27 yard run the ball with Jordan Howard for 4 yards to start the quarter. On the next play, Tarik Cohen couldn’t handle the direct snap and the Packers recover the fumble. It’s the first turnover of the game. Unfortunately the Packers offense couldn’t do anything with it. Rodgers got sacked on the first play as he rolled out. He then went deep to Cobb and Valdez-Scantling on the next two plays. Each had their defender beat by a few steps but Rodgers just couldn’t connect, forcing the Packers to punt it away. After a bad offensive series, the Packers had a bad defensive series with 2 penalties. The Bears work quickly and go back up 7 on a 13 yard pass from Trubisky to Trey Burton. Right on the cue, the Packers play horribly. Another terrible 3 and out offensive series by Rodgers and company. Rodgers has been sacked 4 times today, and Khalil Mack has 2.5 sacks on the game. Meaning, Mack has been part of all but 1 of the Bears sacks. Tarik Cohen set the Bears offense up beautifully with a 44 yard punt return to the Packers 14 yard line. The Packers defense held and forced the Bears to settle for a field goal. Rodgers trying to bring the Packers back again, went to work, finding Adams for a 23 yard gain. Then connecting with Jake Kummerow for a 5 yards gain before finding Cobb for 16 yards. Rodgers then threw to Jimmy Graham in the end Zone. The ball was behind him, on the back shoulder but catchable. The ball bounced off Graham’s hands and was intercepted. Rodgers INT streak comes to an end at 402. The Packers later added a field goal. Packers 17 – Bears 24
The Packers will now miss the playoffs in back-to-back seasons for the first time since the 1991-1992 seasons.
Next Up: The Green Bay Packers will travel to take on the New York Jets on Sunday, December 23 at 12 p.m.
Anthony Haag is a writer for PackersTalk.com. He has been a Packers fan since the day he was born and truly bleeds green and gold. He makes annual visits to Lambeau Field and has attended his fair share of games. You can follow Anthony on Twitter at @anthony_haag