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GameDay: Bears vs. Packers

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GameDay: Bears vs. Packers

CHICAGO AT GREEN BAY (Sunday, NBC)

WHEN: 8:20 p.m. est Dec. 25th
WHERE: Lambeau Field
TV:  Al Michaels (play-by-play) & Chris Collinsworth (analyst) for NBC
RADIO: Wayne Larrivee (play-by-play) & Larry McCarren (analyst) for AM-620 and Packer Radio Network
INTERNET: Cheesehead TV Gameday Live Blog

It will be an NFC North showdown on Christmas night when the Packers host the Bears. It marks the 184th overall meeting between the two clubs, the most in NFL history. Green Bay has already clinched the division and a first-round bye and can claim homefield advantage throughout the NFC playoffs with a victory.

“We still have everything we want to accomplish in front of us,” says Packers defensive tackle B.J. RAJI. “We obviously are blessed to have the opportunity to play in the postseason and play at home.”

“I’m focused on trying to get a win,” says Chicago defensive end JULIUS PEPPERS, who had a sack and forced fumble in the end zone last week that resulted in ISRAEL IDONIJE’s touchdown. “I want to beat Green Bay.”

Chicago’s defense will try to shut down Packers quarterback AARON RODGERS, who last week became the first Packer and fifth quarterback in NFL history to pass for at least 40 touchdowns in a season.

PACKERS:

QB AARON RODGERS is 1st Packer & 5th player in NFL history to pass for 40+ TDs in season

RB JAMES STARKS had rush TD in NFC Champ. RB RYAN GRANT has rushed for 596 yards (99.3 per game) & 5 TDs in past 6 meetings

WR JORDY NELSON has career-highs in catches (53), yards (986) & TDs (10). 5 of his TDs have been 35+ yards. WR DONALD DRIVER has 9,979 rec. yards & needs 21 to become 1st Packer with 10,000. Had TD catch last week.

TE JERMICHAEL FINLEY has 45 catches for 683 yards with 6 TDs & can become 1st GB TE with 2 seasons with 50+ catches, 600+ yards & 5+ TDs

CB CHARLES WOODSON has 5 INTs vs. Chi. Since joining GB in 2006, has 37 INTs (2nd in NFL) & 9 INT-TDs (1st in NFL). S CHARLIE PEPRAH had INT in last home meeting.

DT B.J. RAJI had 18-yard INT-TD in NFC Champ.

LB ERIK WALDEN had career-high 3 sacks in last home meeting. LB CLAY MATTHEWS has 11 sacks in past 14 vs. division.

BEARS:

RB MARION BARBER rushed for career-high 142 yards vs. GB (9/21/08 with Dal.).

RB KAHLIL BELL had TD catch last week

WR-KR-PR DEVIN HESTER holds NFL record for most PR-TDs (12) & combined KR-TDs (17). Incl. playoffs, Hester has 19 career total return TDs (12 PR, 6 KR, missed FG), tied with HOFer DEION SANDERS for most in NFL history.

TE KELLEN DAVIS had 32-yard TD in last meeting.

WR EARL BENNETT had 35-yard TD in NFC Champ

DE JULIUS PEPPERS had sack & FR in last game vs. GB. Since entering NFL in 2002, ties for 3rd with 99 sacks. DE ISRAEL IDONIJE had FR-TD last week. Incl. NFC Champ, LB BRIAN URLACHER aims for 3rd in row vs. GB with INT.

DT HENRY MELTON had sack in last meeting.

In last game at GB, CB CHARLES TILLMAN had 42-yard INT & FR

From the Dope Sheet:

PACKERS AND BEARS SET TO SQUARE OFF ON CHRISTMAS

  • Green Bay returns home after three road games in four weeks to face the division-rival Chicago Bears on Christmas, only the second time in franchise history that the Packers have played on the holiday.
  • Green Bay’s only other Christmas game came in 2005, also against Chicago, a contest the Bears won, 24-17, at Lambeau Field. The Packers and Bears are joined by the Cowboys (2006 and 2010) as the only teams in the league to have two Christmas games over the past six seasons.
  • The Packers can clinch home-field advantage throughout the NFC playoffs with a win over the Bears on Sunday or a San Francisco loss. Green Bay is aiming to be the top seed in the conference for the first time since 1996.
  • Green Bay’s loss at Kansas City this past Sunday marked the first defeat for the Packers in nearly a year, with their last loss coming at New England on Dec. 19, 2010, at Gillette Stadium.
  • The loss to the Chiefs snapped the Packers’ 19-game winning streak (including playoffs), the longest winning streak in franchise history (12-game streak in 1961-62). It is the second-longest winning streak in NFL history, including the postseason, behind only the 2003-04 New England Patriots’ 21-game winning streak.
  • The Packers will be looking to set the franchise record for the most wins in the regular season this Sunday. They have already matched the 13-win totals posted by the team in 1962, 1996, 1997 and 2007.
  • This will be the fourth meeting between the Packers and Bears in 2011, only the sixth time in NFL history that two franchises have met four or more times in a calendar year (see page 3 for more details).
  • Green Bay will be looking to become only the second NFL team to beat another club four times in a calendar year (L.A Raiders over Denver, 1994). The Packers beat the Bears in the 2010 season finale at Lambeau Field and the 2010 NFC Championship in Chicago, and also topped Chicago earlier this season in Week 3 at Soldier Field.
  • This Sunday will mark game No. 184 in the NFL’s oldest rivalry. The Bears hold a 92-85-6 edge in the series, which includes two postseason meetings. Green Bay has won five of the last six meetings between the teams and will be looking to sweep the season series for the second time in the last three seasons (also 2009).

THE DOPE ON THIS WEEK’S OPPONENT:

  • Packers vs. Chicago Bears:
  • All-time regular season: 84-91-6
  • All-time, postseason: 1-1
  • All-time, in Green Bay: 30-22-0
  • Streaks: The Packers have won five of the last six meetings.
  • Last meeting, regular season: Sept. 25, 2011, at Soldier Field; Packers won, 27-17
  • Last meeting, in Green Bay: Jan. 2, 2011; Packers won, 10-3

THE PACKERS-BEARS SERIES

  • No two teams have met on the gridiron more than the Packers and Bears. Sunday they face off for the 184th time.
  • Last season, the teams squared off in the postseason for just the second time in the history of the series. With a berth in Super Bowl XLV on the line, the Packers emerged victorious, 21-14, at Soldier Field.
  • The Packers’ 37-3 win on Nov. 16, 2008, marked the largest margin of victory in the series since Green Bay’s 40-3 win on Dec. 11, 1994. Chicago’s win in December of that year was just the second OT game in series history and first since Sept. 7, 1980, when Packers K Chester Marcol returned his own blocked FG for the winning score.
  • The last time Green Bay led the overall series? On the heels of its three straight NFL championships, 1932, when the Packers led 11-10-5. Two months after Babe Ruth allegedly called his shot at Wrigley Field in the 1932 World Series, the Bears stole from Green Bay a fourth straight title (which at the time was determined by league standings). Chicago barely finished atop the league standings, which unlike today did not count ties. Had the league counted ties in standings, the Packers would have won. The next year, 1933, the NFL began determining its champion with postseason games.

STAT OF THE WEEK

  • With his 2-yard TD pass to WR Donald Driver at Kansas City on Sunday, QB Aaron Rodgers placed his name atop the franchise record book and joined some select NFL company.
  • The touchdown pass to Driver was Rodgers’ 40th of the season, which topped the franchise record of 39 TD passes posted by QB Brett Favre in 1996.
  • Rodgers became just the fifth quarterback in NFL history to throw 40-plus TD passes in a season, joining Dan Marino (1984, ’86), Kurt Warner (’99), Peyton Manning (2004) and Tom Brady (2007).
  • With two games remaining on the schedule, Rodgers now sets his sights on the franchise record for most passing yards in a season. Though 14 games, Rodgers has 4,360 passing yards on the season.
  • Rodgers needs 99 passing yards to top Lynn Dickey’s franchise record of 4,458 yards in 1983. Rodgers fell just 25 yards short of the single-season record in 2009 with 4,434 yards.

Official injury report:

CHICAGO BEARS
Status Report
OUT QB Jay Cutler (right thumb), RB Matt Forte (knee)
DOUBTFUL RB Marion Barber (calf)
QUESTIONABLE LB Lance Briggs (ankle), WR Devin Hester (ankle), DT Henry Melton (shin)
PROBABLE TE Kellen Davis (back)
Practice Report
DID NOT PARTICIPATE IN PRACTICE
Wednesday RB Marion Barber (calf), LB Lance Briggs (ankle), QB Jay Cutler (right thumb), TE Kellen Davis (back), RB Matt Forte (knee), WR Devin Hester (ankle), DT Henry Melton (shin), DE Julius Peppers (not injury related)
Thursday RB Marion Barber (calf), LB Lance Briggs (ankle), QB Jay Cutler (right thumb), RB Matt Forte (knee), WR Devin Hester (ankle)
Friday RB Marion Barber (calf), QB Jay Cutler (right thumb), RB Matt Forte (knee), WR Devin Hester (ankle)
LIMITED PARTICIPATION IN PRACTICE
Thursday TE Kellen Davis (back), DT Henry Melton (shin)
Friday LB Lance Briggs (ankle), DT Henry Melton (shin)
FULL PARTICIPATION IN PRACTICE
Friday TE Kellen Davis (back)
GREEN BAY PACKERS
Status Report
OUT T Bryan Bulaga (knee), T Chad Clifton (hamstring, back), WR Greg Jennings (knee), DE Ryan Pickett (concussion)
QUESTIONABLE DE Mike Neal (shoulder)
PROBABLE LB Desmond Bishop (calf), DE Howard Green (foot), RB Brandon Saine (concussion), RB James Starks (knee, ankle)
Practice Report
OUT (DEFINITELY WILL NOT PLAY)
Wednesday T Bryan Bulaga (knee), WR Greg Jennings (knee)
Thursday T Bryan Bulaga (knee), WR Greg Jennings (knee)
Friday T Bryan Bulaga (knee), WR Greg Jennings (knee)
DID NOT PARTICIPATE IN PRACTICE
Wednesday DE Ryan Pickett (concussion)
Thursday DE Ryan Pickett (concussion)
Friday DE Ryan Pickett (concussion)
LIMITED PARTICIPATION IN PRACTICE
Wednesday LB Desmond Bishop (calf), T Chad Clifton (hamstring, back), DE Mike Neal (shoulder), RB Brandon Saine (concussion)
Thursday LB Desmond Bishop (calf), T Chad Clifton (hamstring, back), DE Howard Green (foot), DE Mike Neal (shoulder)
Friday T Chad Clifton (hamstring, back), DE Howard Green (foot), DE Mike Neal (shoulder)
FULL PARTICIPATION IN PRACTICE
Wednesday RB James Starks (knee, ankle)
Thursday RB Brandon Saine (concussion), RB James Starks (knee, ankle)
Friday LB Desmond Bishop (calf), RB Brandon Saine (concussion), RB James Starks (knee, ankle)
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Fan friendly comments only: off Comments (4) This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.

Wiscokid's picture

Merry Christmas to you Aaron and all of the other folks at CheeseheadTV.

packeraaron's picture

Thanks very much - and to you and yours as well.

o dragao da maldade contra o santo guerrero's picture

Haven't the Packers and Bears met more often than any other pair of teams, not only for the NFL?
Which college or HS teams have met 184 times?

Majik Man's picture

If we're talking all of sports, I'd think some soccer teams from Europe would probably eclipse that, since many have been playing for over a hundred years, with two games a season.

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