At the beginning of the season (other than Bears fans) who would have thought that Da Bears would be firmly in charge of the NFC North?
The last time they won the division was back in 2010 when they went 11-5. With a win against the Packers on Sunday, the Bears will at least match their record for the 2012 season but they’ll clinch the division to better it. And what do you know, the NFL betting odds for Sunday’s NFC North Division rivalry game have Chicago listed as two-field-goal favorites over Green Bay.
When we look at recent performance it would be easy to just shrug the Green Bay Packers off. They are 0-6 on the road this season while the Bears are 6-1 at Soldier Field. That said, this is a rivalry game and what do we know about rivalry games? Anything can happen. Plus, the Packers seem to have found some resurging momentum in their 34-20 home win over the Atlanta Falcons last week. There is also the fact that in modern history, the Bears have been dominated by the Packers.
The last time the Bears beat the Packers was a Thursday Night Football game back in November of 2015. Before that, it was November 2013. If we look at a ten-year history, the Packers have beaten the Bears 18 out of 22 games. The Bears have only won four times in 22 meetings.
The Bears have been playing better than ever at Soldier Field. Right now they are averaging 29 points per game on the season and their defense has been a brick wall at just 17.57 points allowed.
The Packers are sputtering on offense and a mid-season coaching change hasn’t been a big help either. This offensive stumbling has been most apparent while Green Bay has been on the road. They have only managed to put up a hair under 21 points per game and haven’t won an away game this season. But there is one thing people haven’t been mentioning throughout this Packers’ skid that everyone was talking about before the season. They have the toughest schedule in the league.
Let’s look at those away losses. Washington in Week 3, while they were running the gambit with Alex Smith health. Detroit while they were hot and a Division rivalry game. The Los Angeles Rams who have been darn near unstoppable and haven’t lost at home. The Patriots who are well, the Patriots. Then they played Seattle in the Emerald City and Minnesota who are both extremely difficult to beat on their own turf. So it isn’t like they were losing games that were gimmes.
And now they face the Bears who are resurging like we haven’t seen in years. The Packers road defense falls right in line with what the Bears have been scoring at home, so we could see the Bears put up around 30. But I like the Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers to cover the number in this game. They have a lot of experience playing in Chicago and a lot of wins in Chicago, so the Packers will keep this one under a touchdown.
The Bears will probably win this game, but you can’t count the Packers out in a Rivalry as strong as this. If they lose, it will be by a field goal or a field goal and a failed conversion. Since 2008, when the Bears do beat the Packers, the average margin of victory is by 4.25 points.