As the Bears prepared for their Monday Night Football matchup with the Minnesota Vikings, they gained ground in the playoff race and the NFC North division title is within reach. The Patriots reluctantly did their part to set the stage for the Bears to take the division title with their 31-27 win over the Packers.
I have to give the Packers credit – they hung in there until the very end despite starting quarterback Aaron Rodgers sitting on the sidelines and rookie Matt Flynn leading them to an improbable lead for much of the game. In the end, though, his inexperience was the Packers’ undoing as the Packers tried to pull the upset deep in Patriots territory with seconds left, but Flynn couldn’t close the deal. With the loss, the Packers move to 8-6 and not only are their division title hopes in severe jeopardy, but the playoffs are slipping through their collective fingers.
That wasn’t all the good news for the Bears. In fact, the Packers’ loss was the cherry on top of a pretty good football Sunday for the Bears. I posted my rooting interests for the weekend and most of my early Christmas wishes came true.
In the best game – or at least the best finish of the day – the Eagles stormed past the New York Giants to take a commanding lead in the division. The good news for the Bears is that they have a chance to keep pace with the Eagles and hold the tie-breaker over Philadelphia.
The New Orleans Saints dropped their game to the Baltimore Ravens, so they fall back to the pack a bit as the lead car in the Wild Card race.
Just to let you know what kind of day it was for the Bears, the Detroit Lions even helped the cause, beating Tampa Bay while snapping a 26-game road losing streak. Matt Ryan and the Atlanta Falcons didn’t cooperate in beating the Seattle Seahawks and with the Giants’ loss, they clinched a playoff berth.
On Monday night, the NFC North title is there for the taking for the Bears. It doesn’t matter what field they play on, who the opposing quarterback is or any other distractions get in their way. It’s time to seize their moment and pull off one of the most unlikely division titles in recent memory.