“Last Call?”

NFC Game Of The Week

Green Bay Packers at Chicago Bears

Packers: Week 16 was their best win of the season. I saw an effort that includes an all-around performance on both sides of the football against the Tennessee Titans. At this point, we all know what their offense is going to bring to the table. The passing game is lethal. Aaron Rodgers and Davante Adams continue to show why they’re the best quarterback/receiver tandem in this league. My biggest takeaway was how they were able to run the football. The Packers truly dominated the line of scrimmage and wore down the Titans front four. What impressed me was their defense and how they were able to limit Derrick Henry. Green Bay sat six to seven defenders on the line of scrimmage and collapsed those running lanes. Their mindset was simple, Ryan Tannehill will beat us tonight. The division is clinched, now the one seed is in sight for them.

Bears: Just this month, I was on record saying on the radio that they are a defeated football team. At that time, I saw a team get down and not even try to get themselves back into the game and it angered me. Since December 13th, they’ve been on a nice winning streak to keep themselves alive in the playoff picture in the NFC. What’s been the turn around for them? Remember when Matt Nagy became the Bears head coach? Their offensive game plan was simple. Keep Mitchell Trubisky under center and run the football. Finally, they’ve reverted to that again. David Montgomery is getting his touches often and producing. Mitch has also taken solid care of the football. At one time, they were 5-7. Three wins in a row and they’re 8-7 with a game left to play. They’re back home for a huge showdown on Sunday.

Packers X-Factor: Preston Smith– Along with Za’Darius Smith, this guy has elevated the Packers pass rush. Prior to him signing in Green Bay, the Packers didn’t have that guy that couldn’t get home to the quarterback. Now, they do. I look for Preston to lead the way to help contain Tribusky and keep him in the pocket. Also, look for him to drop back in coverage here and there.

Bears X-Factor: Robert Quinn– Anytime I watch the Packers, Aaron is bouncing around in the pocket or he’s moving out the pocket getting yards with his feet. Furthermore, this is where a Robert Quinn factors into the picture. He’s 6’4 with long strides to help pressure the quarterback. On the other hand, I expect him to see many single looks with Khalil Mack commanding two and three blockers.

Final Thoughts: I could talk about this rivalry all day long. Anytime I get the chance to break it down, I take full advantage. Both teams are still fighting for something. With a win, the road to the Super Bowl will travel through Lambeau Field while for the Bears, they need a win or a Cardinals loss. When they first met, I felt the Bears were trying to match the Packers pass for pass. That’s asking to lose the game. The Bears must stick to their box and play their own game. On the other hand with Green Bay, keeping Tribusky in the pocket is key. Don’t allow him to extend the play. Furthermore, this is a great way to end the season.

Prediction: Packers 28 Bears 21

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