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Posted By Smiley On Dec 28 2012 @ 7:43 pm In Chicago Bears | No Comments
On Sunday, the Bears will not only be fighting for a playoff spot but also for pride. To some, coach Lovie Smith is on the hot seat whether the Bears win or lose. If they win the rest is out of there hands as they need the Green Bay Packers to beat the Minnesota Vikings. After starting 7-1 with a lax schedule, the Bears have seen the better teams of the NFL in the last stretch as they have went 2-5. However, if everything goes to plan on Sunday afternoon, Monday morning the Bears will be practicing for their first wildcard game of the 2013 Playoffs. They are in a situation where the Lions want to help Calvin Johnson break the 2,000 yard receiving mark but also I nasty Lions defense that will want to play spoiler after a disappointing season. Not only that but Bears players and fans have to have faith in the Packers ability to win in Minnesota against possible playoff-bound Vikings.
Calvin Johnson needs 104 yards to have 2,000 but the last time he went up against Charles Tillman he didn’t gain more than 40. Yet, the pulled hamstring of Chris Conte has thrust second-year undrafted safety, Anthony Walters, into the starting role. It will be Walters job to negate Johnsons ability to blow past defenders. On the other side of the ball, the Bears have undrafted rookie tackle/guard James Brown starting at left guard and hope he can bring the attitude that Chilo Rachal did but also the skill they need. He will be tested against Nick Fairley and Ndamukong Suh and will need Chris Spencer and Roberto Garza to help him in that area. Meanwhile, as long as Jay Cutler gets the necessary protection, he has to rebound from his poor play in Arizona. If the Bears do get into the playoffs, they need everyone on offense to be contributing and touching the ball, Mike Tice needs to insure that this happens or the Bears will be one-and-done.
The Green Bay Packers have a worse offensive line then the Bears do for once, as they benched the usually reliable Jeff Saturday just to be able to run the ball better. Jared Allen hasn’t had as good a year as he did last year but he should still be feared by the Packers offensive linemen. With the help of an underrated linebacking corps and young secondary led by the veteran Antoine Winfield, the Packers could easily be stuck as the 3rd seed. Adrian Peterson ran for 200+ yards last time the teams met and if Christian Ponder has one of his better passing days the Packers might have a showdown on their hands.
The NFC Norths top two teams will be on the road against talented teams and both are in must-win mode, the Bears more so than the Packers, both games will determine the a good portion of landscape for the NFC side of the playoffs.
Bears: 17 Lions: 14
Packers: 24 Vikings: 17
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