Packers XLV

Look For Pack To Start With A Roar.

Posted September 7th, 2018 @ 07:09pm

The NFL couldn't have picked a better opponent for the Packers to welcome to open their 100th season at Lambeau Field in prime time than the Bears--a team on the rise, but one that habitually crawls into a cave and hibernates at the sound of the name Aaron Rodgers.

No quarterback in NFL history has a better career passer rating than Rodgers against the Bears and he's 16-3 against them in games he's started and finished. The Bears figure to be a much tougher foe in the December meeting, with Khalil Mack and Roquan Smith likely to be a much bigger factor and Matt Nagy's offense more in sync.

So what do we expect to see from the Pack? Well hopefully it will look nothing like the quarterback play we saw on Thursday night. It might take Rodgers and company a series or two, but I expect the Packers offense to click early, using no huddle and using lots of multiple tight end sets, to provide some help when needed on Mack and Leonard Floyd. Don't be surprised if Geronimo Allison introduces himself to the prime time audience, with the Bears likely paying very close attention to Adams, Graham and Floyd.

Jamal Williams will get the start, but Ty Montgomery will figure in heavily in this matchup--he's been at his most productive against the Bears. Vic Fangio is a terrific defensive coach and is building a strong young defense, but Rodgers will be too much for his unit and will likely put up around 27 points.

Lots of intrigue when it comes to Mike Pettine's defense. While he doesn't have much tape to go on when scheming against Nagy's offense, he knows it will resemble what we saw in Kansas City. The Bears' optimism this season will go as far as their quarterback can carry them and we have no idea how Mitch Trubisky will play. We do know that he has a lot more weapons this season, including free agent WRs Allen Robinson and Taylor Gabriel and tight end Trey Burton.

His offensive line is nothing special, so I'd expect the Pack's D linemen to harass him all night. Of course, they'll need to contain the duo of Jordan Howard and Tarik Cohen on the ground. The trio of Daniels, Clark and Wilkerson is the strongest we've seen in years and Blake Martinez has turned into a tackling machine. The question mark will be at the other linebacker spot, where Oren Burks is wearing a shoulder harness and his availability is in question.

The cornerback group will be fascinating to watch. Do Tramon Williams and Kevin King start on the outside? Alexander in the slot? Will Josh Jackson get snaps? Can they afford to keep him off the field? Is Davon House just an insurance policy at this point? They're in a far better place than they were a year ago.

Like the Bears, the Packers should get better as the season goes along and the defense gets comfortable playing in Pettine's system. I think we're going to see a unit that turns the ball over a lot. Hopefully with Matthews in a contract year we'll see him at his best. The Pack needs that; they're so thin at outside linebacker. I still believe they'll add a guy at that spot before the Vikings game.

This is the 13th straight year that these teams will meet in prime time and the Pack lead the series 96-94-6, their first lead in the series since the 30s. The Bears are coming. If their QB is the real dea,l they'll be a factor in the North sooner rather than later. But on this night, the Packers will remind everyone that their time is now.

Packers 30  Bears 20

Much more on this matchup on "Packer Preview" Sunday morning at 7 on KFAN and iHeart radio. Bob McGinn joins at 7:35 to discuss the 2018 edition of the Green and Gold.

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Comments (14):

We came out with a snore, alright. Where are my cheeseburgers -n- lard?

on September 10th, 2018 at 02:50pm

Mack is looking forward to meeting with A-aron.

on September 7th, 2018 at 02:13pm


on September 7th, 2018 at 02:21pm

Give up 20 points to Trubisky and the Bears? Sounds like same old pathetic Packer defense all right........

on September 7th, 2018 at 02:21pm

Check out this awesome podcast detailing the friendship and hatred of two friends; one a Packers fan, one a Vikings fan.

on September 7th, 2018 at 02:39pm


on September 7th, 2018 at 02:58pm

Lol, Matthews has been retired for 2 years. His arms look like rodgers's arms now sans Roids. No way pack cb's can slow down Robinson and White let alone old fool wilkerson trying to stop Cohen and Howard. I'll go 51-13 Bears.

on September 7th, 2018 at 03:27pm

Converting Jackson, how's that going? "Every year I have to revise his picture because his favorite Viking is no longer on the team. That should tell him something." Why has his picture been a Harvin jersey for years, then?

on September 7th, 2018 at 03:36pm

I'd vote in your poll, but to be fair "finishing 7-9 and 3rd in the NFC North" wasn't a choice. Because, that's where the pack are headed this year.

on September 7th, 2018 at 03:38pm

Over under on which week Rodgers goes on IR and once again shows that the Packers are reliant on the starting QB to win? I'm going with 5. McCarthy is the worst HC in the NFL!

on September 7th, 2018 at 03:59pm

I expect the Bears to pull off the upset.

on September 7th, 2018 at 04:17pm

I'm actually really surprised that they kept a 162lb converted RB as their workhorse back. Then again, the other guy is in the milwaukee jail atm.

on September 7th, 2018 at 04:34pm

"The Bears are better." The Bears have a new coach." The Bears have a great quarterback now." The Bears have a great defense" The Bears have added...blah, blah, blah." We've heard this song before. Remember Marc Trestman and John Fox, Jay Cutler and Julius Peppers? Through every verse of that old song over the last quarter century the Packers have racked up a 39-12 record vs Da Bears! I rather expect this one to be similar to last year's at Lambeau, early in the season, won by the Pack 35-14. Aaron Rodgers pitched 4 td passes to 3 different receivers; none though from more than 8 yds. out. This time look for Jimmy Graham to get 2, at least. Even though Chicago outgained GB 308-260 in last year's first meeting the Packers got 4 turnovers to swing the game. They probably will do about that again. What effect will Khalil Mack have? Well, he's on a new team and hasn't played football since December so probably not much. The last time the Packers faced Mack in Oakland in 2015 he had just 1 tackle, 1 assist and 1 sack. But if Da Bears really are getting better give this one to Green Bay 27-17.

on September 8th, 2018 at 05:54am

I'm not quite as comfortable as THC and Packerlifer. and this was before they got Mack. I worry about 12 getting together with the rookie WR's and I don't think we can run on the Bears D line. so it will all be on 12 again. Just hoping Pettine attacks and doesn't sit back in a zone. I'm so sick of those zones. they will give up some big plays , that is ok . ATTACK. I see it close thru out the game and comes down to late FG by Crosby, Pack wins 26-23, vikes win 24-16

on September 8th, 2018 at 11:10am

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