Don't Look Now, But Packers Have Caught Up to the Bears

Don’t look now, but the previously left by the side of the road Green Bay Packers have caught the Chicago Bears in the win column and if the Bears can’t take care of business at the Bay on Monday Night, by virtue of the tiebreaker from their Week 2 win over the Beloved, the Packers will take the lead in the NFC North.

With no thanks to the now 4-6 Lions, the Packers earned their seventh win of the season and fifth in a row following a 2-3 start.  The Bears were 4-1 after five games and all appeared to be a sprint to the finish line.  The Bears have only lost one game since, their Week 10 loss to the Texans where Jay Cutler was knocked out with a concussion that will keep him on the sidelines when the Bears take on the Niners on Monday night.

Meanwhile, the Packers have sustained their share of injuries, including defensive anchors like Charles Woodson and Clay Matthews and offensive lynch pin Greg Jennings, yet they’re on a 5-game winning streak.  It’s reminding me (painfully) of that Super Bowl season the Packers had a couple of years ago.

It’s becoming increasingly clear that the NFC North could very well be decided on December 16th at Soldier Field.  Of course there’s a lot that can happen between now and then, especially as we’ve learned here in Chicago.  Let’s compare their upcoming schedules the rest of the way.

Week Bears Packers Vikings
12 vs Vikings @Giants @ Bears
13 vs Seahawks vs Vikings @ Packers
14 @ Vikings vs Lions vs Bears
15 vs Packers @ Bears @ Rams
16 @ Cardinals vs Titans @ Texans
17 @ Lions @ Vikings vs Packers

The Bears and Packers each have two games remaining with the Vikings and one with the Lions (Bears on the road, Packers get Lions at home) and obviously they play each other again.  That leaves two games vs unique opponents.  The Bears get the Seahawks at home and visit Arizona for a showdown with the Cardinals.

As for the Packers, they get to visit the Big Apple to take on the defending Super Bowl Champion Giants while hosting the Titans.  I’d say those opponents when compared with the Bears’ foes are about a wash.  One ultimately winnable game and one more difficult game.  For the Bears, the visiting Seahawks will pose a challenge, but they get them at home.  Meanwhile the Packers have to travel to New York to face a Giants team coming off a Bye next week.

Let’s not completely dismiss the Vikings in this race. They have four games with the Bears and Packers respectively, so they’ll definitely have a say in the outcome of the North.  They’ve come back down to Earth in recent weeks, but they’re only a game behind the Bears and Packers in the win column.

Again, there’s a lot that can happen along the way, but circle December 16th on your calendar for a  crucial Soldier Field Showdown for the division title.

What do you think?  How does this end up for the Bears?  Can they hold the Packers off a bring home the NFC North crown?


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Tags: Chicago Bears NFC North

  • John Mack

    Nothing is a wash in the NFL, I reject that notion out right. While the Packers play on paper what doesn’t look to be as competitive as who the Bears and Vikes will play, remember that the Titans took the Lions into overtime and won that shootout. To put a perspective on that both the Lions and Bears owned the Jaguars, the Jags almost upset the Texans forcing an overtime shootout and against the Bears Matt Schaub walks away with 95 yds…I’m not trying to confuse with all of those teams but proving nothing is a wash. Jacksonville gets owned by the Bears and Lions, yet the same Jags put up a tough fight against the Texans the Packer (in Lambeau with Blaine Gabbert throwing for 303 yds). Just saying, nothing is a wash sir!

    That being said, if the beloved don’t make the statement we’re all looking for tonight then the NFC is up for grabs! If I’m the vikings, then I’m praying for a Bears’ loss tonight and a Packers loss next week along with a Vikes win. Because all teams at 7-3 would give some leverage to our northern brother Vikes since they own a tie breaker with San Francisco. They’d still be a 1/2 game behind.

    If the Bears hold this down, I can see them ending their season at either 13-3. If not, 12-4. As mentioned in another post I agreed with the user that stated [paraphrased - I'm not a believer that this team is capable of handling Green Bay]. I think the Bears will eek this win out as our front 4 will be more devastating to Kaepernick than how the 9ers front 3/4 will affect Campbell. Bears 13-10