Green Bay Packers @ Chicago Bears
Sunday, 3PM ET
Soldier Field, Chicago, IL
This will be the third match up this season between these NFC North rivals, but only the second meeting in the playoffs ever and the first since 1941. They split the season series. The Bears won at home and the Packers won at home. This will likely be a defensive battle with good quarterback play. I think the team who protects their quarterback better will win this one.
Aaron Rodgers has been great as of late and so has Jay Cutler. The Bears have a better running game with Matt Forte and Chester Taylor, but the Packers receiving core is better than the Bears.
Teams in the playoffs are 8-0 when they lead the game in rushing, so running will be crucial for the Bears. The Bears ran over 40 times last week, but I don’t see that many carries for the backs, but somewhere in the 30′s would only mean good things for the Bears.
Greg Jennings, Donald Driver and Jordy Nelson have more upside than Johnny Knox, Earl Bennett and Devin Hester. These teams match up very well against each other. Clay Matthews, Charles Woodson and Tramon Williams are stars on the Packers defense. Brian Urlacher, Julius Peppers and Lance Briggs are stars on the Bears defense.
Urlacher and the safeties have to play good solid coverage on defense. Matt Forte and Chester Taylor have to run and catch out of the backfield like they have been lately. Greg Olsen and the tight ends have to win their match ups with the Packers linebackers and safeties because the Packers cornerbacks are very good.
Again the team that better protects their QB will likely win. Both offensive lines have been playing better. It will likely come down to the battle up front. Bears offensive line versus Packers defensive line and visa versa.
This game should be good, the same referee as the first match up at Soldier Field will ref this one, Terry McAualy. McAuely called 18 penalties against the Packers in that game, the Packers had more penalties than points in that game. Bears-Packers for a chance at the Super Bowl, I don’t think it gets much better than that. The team with the better quarterback play will win this one. I think Jay Cutler will surprise everyone and play his biggest game ever.
Final Score: Bears 23, Packers 17.
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