So, it turns out that I was wrong when I picked the Packers to go into Soldier Field and pick up their 3rd win of the season on Monday night.
In my defense though, who knew that Devin Hester would pick Monday for his first punt return TD in over 2 years? That killed me. But it didn’t kill me nearly as much as the 18 penalties for 152 yards. 152 yards!
This game though showed us everything that’s right with great rivalries in the NFL and all of sport. The fans, players and media get into the action and everyone helps to make it one of the biggest match-ups of the season.
Congrats to the Bears on the 20-17 win.
I can’t wait until January 2, 2011 when we do it all over again, this time at Lambeau!
So, the time has come to really break down Week 3’s Monday Night Football game between the Green Bay Packers and the Chicago Bears. Â And ladies and gentlemen I am ready!
After Week 2 both teams have 2-0 records which certainly didn’t make picking this game any easier. Â I looked at some numbers, looked at some history and looked at some hunches and broke it all down.
Here are my thoughts and some of the numbers:
-Aaron Rodgers is a stud. Â It’s not a coincidence that he was taken so high in almost every NFL fantasy draft on the planet this year. Â He has an arm that you can dream on, he’s smart with the ball and he’s becoming a better quarterback every week. Â The future is bright in Green Bay with Rodgers in the huddle.
-Jay Cutler has been a huge surprise to me this season. Â His 649 passing yards and 5 touchdowns in the first 2 weeks of the season shock the heck out of me. Â This is a guy that I didn’t believe in at all but he seems to want to prove me wrong personally this season.
-The Packers are averaging over 30 points a game so far in the young season. Â That’s a big number. Â I don’t expect that they will keep that average over 16 games, but a hot start is a hot start. Â I can’t argue with that.
-Likewise, the Packers defense has been impressive giving up an average of 13.5 points per game. Â I know that one of those games was against Buffalo, but still. Â Not a bad start.
-Da Bears are scoring a touchdown less per game at 23 points per game despite the passing numbers that Cutler is putting up. Â That tells me that the running game is lacking something.
-The Bears are also allowing more points with a 17 point average after the first 2 games of the season. Â And you can at 3.5 to that number after the disallowed TD catch from Calvin Johnson of the Lions in Week 1.
-Rodgers has a 3-1 record against the Bears since he took over for Brett Favre. Â And his only loss was a 20-17Â squeakerÂ Â in overtime in Chicago. Â He looks comfortable playing in the big rivalry match-up.
-Meanwhile, Cutler had 2 losses hung on him last year against the Pack. Â Not great.
-I love watching Clay Matthews and Al Harris play defense for the Packers.
-I have always loved watching new Bears DE Julius Peppers eat quarterbacks.
-Green Bay place kicker Mason Crosby is 3 for 3 in field goal attempts over 40 yards so far this season in 2 outdoor stadiums.
-Robbie Gould has been perfect in field goal attempts, but his longest so far this season has been 40 yards.
When I take a look at all of this information together and add in my gut feeling the answer starts to become clearer for me.
I don’t believe in Jay Cutler enough in this type of game to keep his big numbers up. Â I believe in Al Harris’ ability to shut down Johnny Knox in the secondary. Â And if the game is on the line, on the road, I like Mason Crosby’s chances of knocking in a long field goal to seal the deal.
My pick for Week 3 Monday Night Football is the Green Bay Packers.
Look for them to win outright and improve their record to 3-0.
For all of my NFL picks this week check out the video below and if you disagree with any of them let me know at fanshots.com.
Have a great weekend fans and good luck with your picks!
We are only 9 days away from the first meeting of the season between the Green Bay Packers and the Chicago Bears. Â And this year the rivals get the biggest stage of them all, Week 3 Monday Night Football!
Jon Gruden, Mike Tirico and Ron Jaworski will be in Chicago to call the game on ESPN and it should be a good one.
Both the Packers and the Bears won their Week 1 match-ups and looked pretty good doing so (although the Lions did have the Bears beat). Â Week 2 will go a long way to show how the Bears look as they travel to Dallas. Â While the Packers get Buffalo at home in what should be a little bit easier of an assignment.
I don’t want to make any picks before I’ve seen both teams play their second games, but I did look back at the last few years to see how the Packers vs. Bears rivalry has been going.
In 2009 the Packers won both games (Week 1 & Week 14) by almost identical scores going 21-15 and 21-14. Â Both were close affairs, but wins are wins.
In 2008 the season series was split as the Packers won 37-3 at home in Week 11 and the Bears won 20-17 in overtime at Soldier Field.
Looking at the 4 games I pull out 2 pieces of information that are important to me:
1) Aaron Rodgers has a 3 wins and 1 loss record head to head against the Bears, including that tough Week 16 win in Chicago in 2009.
2) Jay Cutler is winless in his two starts against the Packers in a Bears uniform. Â And going back to 2007 (The Favre Era) Cutler has never beaten the Packers in 3 attempts.
So, before all the information is in I will make my pre-preview pick. Â This pick comes with the stipulation that I may change it based on Week 2 results, injuries, individual performances and hunches. Â With this ill advised and under-informed pick I will take Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers to march into Soldier Field and beat the Bears.
Come back next week for more lead up, information, stats, photos and trash talk as Week 3 and Monday Night Football get even closer!
The Chicago Bears are a professional American football team based in Chicago, Illinois. They are members of the NFC North Division of the National Football Conference (NFC) in the National Football League (NFL). The team is legally and corporately registered as Chicago Bears Football Club, Incorporated. The Bears have the most enshrinees in the Pro Football Hall of Fame, with 26 members. The Bears have also recorded more regular season and overall victories than any other NFL franchise. The franchise recorded its 700th win on December 7, 2008.
The club was founded in Decatur, Illinois, in 1919, and moved to Chicago in 1921.Â The Bears are one of only two remaining franchises from the NFL’s founding(Arizona Cardinals) . The team played home games at Wrigley Field on Chicago’s North Side through the 1970 season.Â Since then, with the exception of 2002, the Bears have played all their games at Soldier field.Â They have a longstanding rivalry with divisional team, The Green Bay Packers.
The Green Bay Packers are an American football team based in Green Bay, Wisconsin. TheyÂ are the third-oldest franchise in the NFL.Â The Packers are members of the North Division of the National Football Conference (NFC) in the National Football League (NFL).Â The team has a historic rivalry with the Chicago Bears, whom they have played in over 170 games. The Packers also share a fierce rivalry with the Minnesota Vikings, who also reside in the NFC North along with the Packers.Â The Packers are the only non-profit, community-owned major league professional sports team in the United States.
The Green Bay Packers were founded on August 11, 1919 by former high-school football rivals Earl “Curly” Lambeau and George Whitney Calhoun.Lambeau solicited funds for uniforms from his employer, the Indian Packing Company. He was given $500 for uniforms and equipment, on the condition that the team be named for its sponsor. Today “Green Bay Packers” is the oldest team-name still in use in the NFL, both by its nickname and by virtue of remaining in its original city.Â Source: Wikipedia
Green Bay Packers vs. Chicago Bears have been bitter division rivals for a long time.Â Although playing nearly two hundred games versus each other over their history, neither team has seemed to gain the upper hand in the overall win-loss column.Â The Bears have the slight edge in that department (90 – 82 – 6) As of end of 2009 season. Berlin black