Gunning for Bear: Rivals vie for NFC North lead

FOX Football Insider
Benkert shines in loss to Jets

(WLAX/WEUX) – The oldest rivals in the National Football League meet Sunday at Soldier Field, with first place on the line in the NFC North Division.

The 12 noon clash between the 4-1 Packers and 3-2 Bears will be televised exclusively on FOX 25/48 in Western Wisconsin, followed by the FOX network post-game show and then an hour-long Packers Blitz post-game program.

An extra dimension is added to the Green Bay-Chicago rivalry when the stakes are high, which has been the exception instead of the rule in the Aaron Rodgers era.

Rodgers is 21-5 as a starter versus Chicago, and Green Bay has won 19 of the last 22 meetings with the Bears.

“I’m just a small part of this journey,” Rodgers said.  “It’s been over 100 years of playing and fortunate to have this little time right now to be able to be a starter and impact the all-time series.

“Little Green Bay was getting beat up for a long time by our foes to the South and then Favrey (Brett Favre) showed up and we closed the gap and then we’re overtaking them.  But I don’t think it’s the most important part of the all-time legacy. . .  It’s always a battle against them and always fun when we can beat ‘em.”

In the Aaron Rodgers era, the Packers have simply dominated the series, which Green Bay leads 101-95-6 all-time.

Both teams enter Sunday’s contest on winning streaks.

The Chicago offense, under rookie quarterback Justin Fields, looked anemic three weeks ago.  But the Bears “Monsters of the Midway” defense has spearheaded two straight victories over Detroit and Las Vegas.

Green Bay, after a horrific opening loss in Florida to New Orleans, has reeled off four consecutive victories despite missing key starters to injury.

Keys to the game for the Packers:  protect Rodgers and establish the run, pressure and contain Field, and be more productive in the red zone with key weapons:  Davante Adams, Aaron Jones, and Robert Tonyan.

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Packers 27, Bears 20

A potential letdown/hangover looms after emotional victory in Cincinnati.  Another physical match-up, this time against a division rival on the rise.  Rodgers and Green Bay find a way.

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