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Packers Daily Links: Chicago Extends Lead Over Green Bay in NFC North

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Packers Daily Links: Chicago Extends Lead Over Green Bay in NFC North

By beating the Detroit Lions on Monday Night Football, the Chicago Bears have extended their lead over the Green Bay Packers in the NFC North standings, although the Packers would still qualify for the playoffs if the season ended today. "After a 13-7 defeat of the Lions in a game that wasn't that close, the Bears have the second-best record (5-1) in the NFC," writes ESPN.com NFC North blogger Kevin Seifert. "According to the updated standings, the Vikings (5-2) rank fifth and the Packers (4-3) sixth in the conference. The Lions, on the other hand, have more losses at 2-4 than 24 of the NFL's 32 teams. " The Packers play five division opponents after the bye week this season, so there's still a lot of time to make up ground on the Bears.

More on the Monday Night Football game comes from the Associated Press.

Now that it's been announced and confirmed that defensive back Charles Woodson has a broken collarbone and will likely miss more than month of action, attention has turned to how the Packers will replace Woodson. "At safety McMillian and second-year man M.D. Jennings will share time in place of Woodson," writes Tom Silverstein of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. "Capers plans to use McMillian, a fourth-round pick, in some of the nickel and dime positions that Woodson played, figuring he's big enough to play the run and pressure the quarterback." It's not as simple as just replacing Woodson at safety, however. In addition to McMillian and Jennings, Woodson's absence could also have implication on how the Packers use Casey Hayward, Davon House and Sam Shields at cornerback as well. It will definitely be a team effort in replacing the veteran Woodson.

More on Charles Woodson and how to replace him comes from the Green Bay Press-Gazette, ESPNMilwaukee.com, Packer Report, twice, Fox Sports Wisconsin, the Packers official website, ESPN.com and JSOnline, twice.

There's a chance wide receiver Greg Jennings could return to practice this week and play in the Packers' upcoming game against the Jacksonville Jaguars on Sunday. "Jennings will go through a run test Thursday, and if he passes he'll be given an opportunity to practice Friday," writes Silverstein. Jennings, of course, is nursing a groin injury that dates back to the season opener when he originally aggravated it.

More on Greg Jennings and his role in the Packers offense comes from the Press-Gazette.

Greg Jennings also played a practical joke on fellow wide receiver James Jones on Monday, a prank that is detailed at ESPNMilwaukee.com, Press-Gazette and Fox Sports Wisconsin.

Jaguars running back Maurice Jones-Drew has already been ruled out of Sunday's game against the Packers. "Jones-Drew injured his left foot on the first play of Sunday's 26-23 loss to the Raiders in overtime," according to an Associated Press report. "He wasn't able to play through the pain and spent the second half on crutches and wearing a protective boot." As one of the premiere running backs in the NFL, Jones-Drew is one of the Jaguars' biggest weapons, and his loss is a major blow to the Jaguars and any hopes they might have of beating the Packers.

Analysis of the Packers' win over the Rams comes from Bob McGinn of the Journal Sentinel, Cliff Christl and Eric Baranczyk of the Press-Gazette and Fox Sports Wisconsin.

The play of inside linebacker Brad Jones in Sunday's game is noted by the Press-Gazette.

An appearance by Aaron Rodgers on the Jim Rome show on Monday is recapped at PackersNews.com.

Items from Mike McCarthy's Monday press conference are summed up at PackersNews.com and JSOnline.

A transcript of an interview by former Packer LeRoy Butler talking about an incentive program in 1996 is provided by SportsRadioInterviews.com.

The Packers announced that they have officially been approved for funding from the NFL for their stadium expansion.

Some film breakdown of the Aaron Rodgers to Randall Cobb 39-yard touchdown pass comes from AllGreenBayPackers.com.

Brian Carriveau is the author of "It's Just a Game: Big League Drama in Small Town America," a member of the Pro Football Writers of America and an editor at Cheesehead TV. To contact Brian, email carriveau@uwalumni.com.

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Fan friendly comments only: off Comments (9) This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.

Franklin Hillside's picture

The Bears also strengthened their position in the "Teams I'm Not Afraid Of" standings.

calipackfan's picture

The bears and vikings have to enjoy this because its not gonna last.

IowaPackFan's picture

There is a lot of homerism on this site, so in an effort to try and buck the trend a bit, I think the Bears have one of the strongest teams they've had since they went to the Super Bowl in 2006. Their defense is arguably the best in the league (certainly top 5). Their offense has the potential to be very good, but that offensive line is still pretty dreadful. IMO, they are more of a threat than they were in 2010 when they won the division. In 2010, they were vastly overrated. I think their defense will continue to play very well, but the question is whether or not that offense can start to click. If they do, I see late season battle for the Norris crown. Either way, the division will be taken by the Bears or Packers and 2nd place is getting a wildcard.

Vikings will not last. They're certainly better than anyone expected, and as a consequence many of their games have been fairly lopsided. They could sweep the NFC West at this point, and should beat 3 of 4 of the AFC South. They'll beat the terrible Bucs, but they'll lose to the Texans. They're not a bad team, by any means, but the only truly top tier team they've beaten was the 49ers (and yes, it was a good win, but not one they're likely to repeat)

FITZCORE 1252'S EVO's picture

WHAAAA? Homerism? On a site called CHEESEHEAD EFFING TV!?!? You don't say... smh

IowaPackFan's picture

Yeah - I thought about that later and realized this probably isn't the best place to expect unbiased football reader comments. But, I'd like to think we're a little more realistic than some other fans (cough: Vikings fans)

packeraaron's picture

I think the Bears have a fine team, but they will fold when they play better teams. Dominating the Jaguars and the Lions is all well and good. They have yet to face Houston, San Francisco and the Seahawks. I think those games will change a lot of opinions on the 2012 Bears.

FITZCORE 1252'S EVO's picture

I have waaay too many bear fan friends, and that's exactly what I've been telling them. They do get the hawks and texans at soldier, but they could lose both. The Pack will sweep them, and they'll lose one or two more outside of those. I'm not sold on their D, they're living off turn overs... I've seen how that movie usually ends.

Let's compare records in January... That's what ol' Fitzy says.

IowaPackFan's picture

You're probably right. The Bears seem to be the antithesis of the Packers last year. Just hoping that defense can get them to the playoffs. Problem is their offense consists of Marshall and Forte. If those guys are held in check, they don't score more than 3 times a game.

FITZCORE 1252'S EVO's picture

A couple nits to pick...

"After a 13-7 defeat of the Lions in a game that wasn’t that close".

The lions had THREE red zone turn overs. Very easily could've won that game. I wasn't impressed by the bears. The lions wounds were mostly self inflicted.

"Jones-Drew is one of the Jaguars’ biggest weapons".

ONLY weapon.

GBP 4 LIFE

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