PACKERS AND BEARS SET TO SQUARE OFF TODAY FOR NFC NORTH TITLE
– The Packers (7-7-1) will take on the Chicago Bears (8-7) today at Soldier Field in the regular-season finale, the second time in the last four seasons (2010) that the NFC North rivals have squared off in the final game of the season.
– The Packers are currently second in the division behind Chicago, but can clinch their third straight NFC North title and their fifth straight playoff berth with a win over the Bears. Green Bay will be looking to win three consecutive division championships for the first time since 2002-04.
– According to the Elias Sports Bureau, this will be the first time that two teams from the NFC North/Central Division have met in the season finale with the winner capturing the division title since Green Bay played at Detroit in 1993. The Lions won the NFC Central title with a 30-20 victory, but both teams made the playoffs that season.
– In the 11 seasons of the NFC North (2002-12), the Packers (six) and Bears (three) have accounted for nine division titles.
– This marks the second straight year that the Packers have closed out their season away from Lambeau Field (at Minnesota in 2012). It is the first time Green Bay has gone on the road for its season finale in back-to-back years since 2001-02 (at N.Y. Giants, at N.Y. Jets).
– This will be just the eighth time in the last 80 seasons that Green Bay and Chicago have met in the regular-season finale. The 2010 meeting was the first time that the teams played at Lambeau Field in a season finale. The Packers last played in Week 17 at Soldier Field in 2006, Head Coach Mike McCarthy’s first season at the helm.
– The Packers have won nine of their last 10 season finales and 17 of their last 19 dating back to 1994. Green Bay’s loss at Minnesota last season in Week 17 snapped a nine-game winning streak in season finales.
– Green Bay has won six of its last seven season finales against NFC North foes. The Packers have won four straight season finales vs. Chicago.
– Today’s game will mark the sixth time in eight seasons under McCarthy that the Packers have played at Soldier Field in December (2006-09, 12).
– Including playoffs, the Packers have won three straight games at Soldier Field and four of the last five at the stadium. Green Bay has held Chicago to 20 points or less in six consecutive games at Soldier Field.
– Today will mark game No. 188 in the NFL’s oldest rivalry. The Bears hold a 93-88-6 edge in the series, which includes two playoff games (1-1).
– The Packers have won eight of the last 10 meetings against the Bears (including playoffs). Chicago’s 27-20 win over the Packers earlier this season at Lambeau Field in Week 9 snapped Green Bay’s six-game winning streak against the Bears, the Packers’ longest since a seven-game streak vs. Chicago from 2000-03.
– Eight of the last 11 contests between the Packers and Bears (including postseason) have been decided by eight points or less.
– Green Bay enters today’s game with a 2-2-1 record in NFC North contests this season. The Packers have finished with a winning record in the division in every season under McCarthy (2006-12), one of two teams in the league (New England) to accomplish that feat over that span.
– Since 2009, the Packers have a 17-6 (.739) overall regular-season record in December/January, which ranks No. 3 in the NFL behind only New England (20-4, .833) and San Diego (18-6, .750).
WEARING THE STRIPES
– Today’s officiating crew includes referee Clete Blakeman (34), umpire Garth DeFelice (53), head linesman Tony Veteri (36), line judge Ron Marinucci (107), field judge Dave Meslow (118), side judge Greg Meyer (78) and back judge Terrence Miles (111).
Tags: #GBvsCHI, chicago bears, press box notes
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