Hi, hello & welcome to Week 7 of the National Football League! I’m Steve Cook, and after six weeks we’re pretty much right where we started. Three decent weeks have been followed by three not so good weeks, and I’m a game over .500 for the season. Woohoo! Dustin James has told me this is unacceptable, and he will not allow me to do this column in 2017 if I finish under .500 for the 2016 season. I’ll have to step things up here for the next eleven weeks to keep that from happening.
Speaking of people that have had some disappointing weeks, both of these teams can’t feel too great about themselves heading into Thursday night’s titanic struggle.
Thursday, October 20
Chicago at Green Bay (-8)
Bears vs. Packers has been football personified through the years. They’ve played more games against each other than any two other NFL teams. The Bears lead the rivalry 94-92-6. The Bears have 758 wins to the Packers’ 752 & 18 divisional titles to the Packers’ 17. The Packers have 13 NFL championships to the Bears’ 9. When you think classic NFL franchises, you think Bears & Packers. George Halas. Vince Lombardi. You know what Vince Lombardi would say if he saw this years’ Bears & Packers teams…
The Bears being bad isn’t exactly a surprise, but they seemed on the verge of getting their second win of the season on Sunday. Jacksonville put up 17 points in the 4th quarter to get a rare road win for their franchise, and Bears fans took this as well as you would expect in a NSFW fashion. (Yeah, turn the volume down on this if you’re at work.)
Classy! The Bears have been somewhat effective on offense except for the part where they try to put the ball into the end zone, and whether it’s Brian Hoyer or Jay Cutler at quarterback doesn’t really seem to make much of a difference. They can both throw for a lot of yards and not put enough points on the board. In fact, Hoyer’s numbers compare very well with the quarterback of the team he’ll be playing on Thursday.
Nobody’s saying Aaron Rodgers is one of the worst QBs in the league or anything like that, but it’s hard to say that he hasn’t regressed from being the AARON RODGERS he was for a couple of years there. It’s easy to see why it’s happened when you watch the Packers.They have no run game to speak of, the line isn’t particularly good, and outside of Jordy Nelson there aren’t a lot of great choices to throw the ball to. Rodgers is in a similar situation to Andrew Luck. Their franchises have pretty much given up on putting anything of value around them, and trust their quarterback to make up for the lack of ability at other positions on the field. The Packers are 3-2 so it’s not like they’re in the sad situation the Bears are in at the bottom of the division or anything like that, but it’s tough to watch them play against good teams and envision them passing the Vikings for the division lead. Looking at their schedule, I can see them getting to ten wins, which should probably be enough for a wild card slot…but they’ll be fighting with Arizona/Seattle & whoever gets second in the NFC East for one, so it’ll be tougher than it has been most years.
The Packers should win this game, having the home field advantage, the short week and the advantage on talent. That being said, Green Bay hasn’t won a game by more than seven points yet, it’s a rivalry game & the Bears will have plenty of motivation. The Bears won the Thursday meeting in Green Bay last season, don’t be shocked if they at least keep this game close. Weird things happen in this rivalry.
Week 6 Results: 6-7-2
2016 Results: 45-44-3