At the start of the 1992 season, the Chicago Bears were 80-57-6 against the Green Bay Packers in the NFL’s oldest rivalry. The Bears had won four straight games and 12 of 14 in the series under Hall of Fame coach Mike Ditka.
Boy, how things have changed.
After Green Bay’s 24-14 win in Chicago on Sunday, the Packers now hold a 102-95-6 all-time series lead. Surprisingly, the Packers have won 45 of the last 60 games (0.750).
The Packers have won five in a row against their neighbors to the south, and 10 of 11 overall. And if you’re looking for a reason, it’s simple: quarterbacks.
Brett Favre went 22-10 against the Bears from 1992-2007 (.688). And Aaron Rodgers is now 22-5 against Chicago since he became the starter in 2008 (.815).
Brett Hundley also went 1-0, winning his only start against the Bears in 2017.
“I still own you,” Rodgers shouted to Chicago fans on Sunday after his late ground touchdown froze the game for Green Bay.
Chicago, on the other hand, had a revolving door at the quarterback. In fact, the Bears have had 35 starting quarterbacks since that 1992 season when Favre took over at Green Bay.
“Well we’ve won a couple in a row now,” Rodgers said after the game. “I like this rivalry. It has been a lot of fun over the years. That’s what I said (Bears quarterback) Justin (Fields), I said, ‘Take advantage of this. It’s a special rivalry, unlike any other in our game. ‘ I think we played a full game today.
The Packers won their fifth straight game, improved to 5-1 and hold a two-game NFC North lead over Chicago and Minnesota (both 3-3).
Here is the good, the bad and the ugly of Green Bay’s victory.
RESPOND TO MAN: The Bears had moved closer to 17-14 midway through the fourth quarter and had all the momentum. It was then that Aaron Rodgers led a 75-yard touchdown in seven games that gave Green Bay a 24-14 lead and largely froze the game.
Rodgers capped the walk with a 6-yard touchdown. And if that turns out to be Rodgers’ last game at Soldier Field with the Packers, he’s made it a solid one with two pass touchdowns and one rushing score.
“I love to play at Soldier Field,” said Rodgers. “I said this week I have a lot of respect for the fans. I’m sure there is a little respect that comes back, not a lot of love I’m sure. good times on this ground, many good battles and today it was a bit like the others.
SECONDARY: The Packers were deprived of starting cornerbacks Jaire Alexander (joint AC in his right shoulder) and Kevin King (shoulder). Safety Darnell Savage then left early in the third quarter with a concussion.
Still, the Bears were never able to get things done in the air.
Chicago finished with 174 passing yards and Fields had a score of 75.2. Eric Stokes, Chandon Sullivan and Rasul Douglas were the three main corners and Henry Black played well after replacing Savage.
“You have to have that next player mentality,” said Packers coach Matt LaFleur. “I think our guys are doing that and they take great pride in what they do and they put in the work every week and our coaches work hard to get everyone ready so it’s a nice, it’s a great effort team by Everyone. “
KENNY CLARK: The Bears trailed, 24-14, but reached the Packers’ 32 with just over 3 minutes left. Twice in three games, however, Clark had huge sacks that knocked the Bears out of the hoops and largely ended the game.
In the first and 10th, Clark dumped Fields for a 12-yard loss. Then in the third and -15, Clark sacked Fields for an 11-yard loss.
The Bears failed to convert at fourth and 26 and Green Bay ran out of time.
“It was good, just to get those two sacks on the last try and seal the win,” said Clark. “It was great for me. Our rushing group rushed really hard the whole game and I was finally happy it paid off.
MAT LAFLEUR: The Green Bay third-year coach is now a remarkable 13-1 against enemies of NFC North. LaFleur is 5-0 against Chicago and Detroit and 3-1 against Minnesota.
LaFleur is also 31-7 overall in regular season games (.816). And LaFleur has yet to lose consecutive games.
THIS AND THAT: Packers kicker Corey Bojorquez hit an 82-yard punt that scored 62.… Savage had an interception before leaving with a concussion. … Aaron Jones had his fourth touchdown of the year, a new career high. … The Green Bay offense, which came into play only 11 of 20 in the red zone (55.0%), fell to 3 against 4 on Sunday (75.0%). … Outside linebacker Jonathan Garvin, who had 0.5 sacks since joining the league in 2020, had one of Green Bay’s four sacks.
PROTECTION DEFECTS: Aaron Rodgers has been sacked three times. And on two of them, the Chicago rushers remained intact and buried Rodgers.
Khalil Mack, Robert Quinn and Akiem Hicks all had sacks for Chicago against a Green Bay line that lost center Josh Myers early in the game and remains without preferred starting left tackle David Bakhtiari (ACL).
“Me personally, I feel like the bag that I gave up, every time I give up a bag, when I look at it, it’s something that I did to fight,” said Jenkins, who gave up a sack in the first quarter. “I opened my hips too quickly and he walked around me. As a unit, we just did what we needed to do.
QUICK DEFENSE: The Bears were fourth behind running back Khalil Herbert, a rookie pick in the sixth round draft. It didn’t matter, however.
Herbert ran for 97 yards on 19 carries (5.1) and hit a rushing touchdown. Overall, the Bears have 140 rushing yards on 26 carries (5.4).
“I really liked the way he ran the game,” Bears coach Matt Nagy said of Herbert. “It was like last week; when he makes a cut and plants that left or right foot in the ground, he goes vertical… We need him right now.
THE UGLY ONE
DEFENSE OF THE RED ZONE: Before Sunday, opponents had entered the red zone 13 times this season against the Green Bay defense. And on each of those 13 trips, the Packers’ enemies scored touchdowns.
The Bears maintained that streak by scoring touchdowns on their two trips to the red zone. The Packers have now cleared touchdowns on all 15 trips to the red zone and rank last in the league in red zone defense.
“We’re poor right now in the red zone,” Packers defensive coordinator Joe Barry said this week. “It’s still an area of focus, but it’s something we’ve invested a lot of time and energy into.
“It’s something that we are constantly working on, talking about and preaching about. The guys are in it. I can’t wait to get out there and keep working on it and keep chipping away. But it’s definitely something we need to improve. There is no doubt about it. “
Unfortunately for the Packers, there was no improvement this week.