The Green Bay Packers (1-2) and Chicago Bears (2-1) will square off for the first of two meetings this season on Sunday, at 1:00 p.m. Eastern. Fox affiliates in much of the country will carry an NFC North showdown that could set the tone for the rest of the season.
Randall Cobb caught a last-minute, game-winning touchdown pass from Aaron Rodgers in Week 17 last year, a winner-take-all affair for the division crown and a trip to the playoffs, the last time these two teams met. The Packers have won six of their last seven meetings with the Bears. They have a 10-2 record in the last 12 games where Rodgers has thrown at least ten passes.
Green Bay is, surprisingly, struggling to find any offensive consistency after three games. The Packers only mustered 16 points in defeat in the season-opener against the Seattle Seahawks. The following week, Green Bay fell behind the Jets 21-3 before rallying behind the arm of Aaron Rodgers, who threw for 346 yards and a trio of touchdowns. On Sunday, the Packers managed a single touchdown against the Lions' suspect secondary in a 19-7 loss.
The Bears are on a bit of a roll after marching into MetLIfe on Monday Night Football and walking away with a win over the New York Jets, 27-19. Chicago is coming off consecutive road wins against the 49ers and Jets after suffering a tough opening day loss to the Buffalo Bills. The Bears are not without their issues, however, as they rank last in the NFL with 64 yards per game on the ground. They also struggle to defend the run, with the NFL's 26th ranked run defense allowing 144.7 yards per game. That could be good news for Eddie Lacy.
How to Watch
Where: Soldier Field
When: 1 p.m. ET
Nuts and Bolts
While Green Bay boasts two of the NFL's best receivers along with Rodgers at quarterback, the offense has struggled to move the chains. Behind a poor offensive line, Rodgers has been sacked nine times, third-worst in the NFL, and is completing only 62.7 percent of his passes, his lowest mark as a starter. In addition, the Packers average an anemic 3.6 yards/carry rushing the football. The line has to get better to open lanes, give Rodgers time, and allow the Packers to have a chance to compete in the North.
As for the Bears, they also have struggled running the football. Matt Forte is averaging only 3.2 yards per carry over the first three games of the season. He also has yet to break a single run of 20 or more yards, and is without a touchdown. Forte does have 19 receptions, ranking third on the team behind Alshon Jeffery and Martellus Bennett.
For more on the Packers, please read ACME Packing Company.
To read up on the Bears, check out Windy City Gridiron.