For the first time this season, there are two divisional matchups in the NFC North. The Chicago Bears travel to Minnesota to round out their season series against the Vikings. Both of those teams are coming off of tough losses last week and cannot afford another in this game.
The Detroit Lions come to Lambeau Field where they haven’t logged a victory in over 20 years to take on the Green Bay Packers in the Sunday night football matchup. Detroit suffered a gut-wrenching and last-second defeat at the hands of Andrew Luck and the Indianapolis Colts. The Packers were the only victorious team in the North this past week. The win helped them reclaim sole possession of first place in the divsion.
Here’s a sneak peak at each matchup and some storylines heading into the games.
Chicago Bears (8-4) at Minnesota Vikings (6-6)
The Bears are starting to feel the effects of their hard-fought season. They learned that they will be without long-time veteran linebacker Brian Urlacher for at least the next three weeks due to a hamstring injury. While Urlacher has been hampered by some bumps and bruises this season, there is no question the Bears defense is better with him on the field. Read more...(1630 words + 3 images, estimated 6:31 mins reading time)
With many NFC North divisional games approaching, I thought this might be a good opportunity to ask an intriguing question about this weekend’s matchup between the Minnesota Vikings and Chicago Bears: Who do most Packers fans typically want to win this game? Let’s pretend that we’re in the land of make believe and that the natural answer of “neither” is not an option.
It would seem logical to think that the largest determiner is “which scenario helps the Packers most?” Obviously, the Bears are closest to the Packers in the divisional standings so it would seemingly benefit Green Bay more if the Vikings were to win. The Bears are the better team of the two as long as they have a healthy Jay Cutler at quarterback. They pose the bigger threat to the Packers’ chances of winning the division and with no guarantee of a wild card spot, getting into the playoffs at all.
Another argument could be made that the Vikings are already having a much better season than most thought and the Packers don’t want to have to contend with a hot Minnesota team when they finally meet in two weeks. Minnesota is still over .500 and has shown that they can play with any team on any given day. I cite their impressive win over the San Francisco 49ers earlier this season who, at the time, were undefeated and playing better than any other team at that point. The Vikes have also swept the Detroit Lions already this season. Read more...(798 words + 3 images, estimated 3:12 mins reading time)