Aaron Rodgers has owned the Chicago Bears defense for the majority of his time as Green Bay Packers quarterback. That’s not a surprise considering he’ll be in the Hall of Fame one day. However, it’s also not like he’s Superman. There’s been a big reason the man has enjoyed so much success against them. He’s gotten good pass protection to do so.
Think about this. In every game the Bears have lost to the Packers dating all the way back to 2008, they’ve averaged just 9.05 pressures on the quarterback over the course of a game. In their wins, that jumps to 11.25. To date the Bears defense has failed to pressure Rodgers at least 20 times in a game.
Anybody knows that without consistent heat on a great quarterback, they’re going to burn you sooner or later. That is the reality this defense faces as their torturer once again looms on the horizon. The division is there to grab. A win knocks the Packers out of the playoffs. Can they deliver a full 60-minute performance?
The odds favorite more than ever, and here’s why.
Packers O-line unlikely to be at full strength vs. Chicago Bears defense
Last time Rodgers had his great comeback in Lambeau Field, he was aided by excellent protection in the second half from his offensive line. That may be a problem if the same situation comes around again at Soldier Field. The Packers front is in a state of crisis as three of their starters are dealing with notable injuries.
“The right side of the Packers’ line could especially be a pressure point if Spriggs, a third-year player, starts again. Bulaga missed practice again Wednesday with a knee injury.
Justin McCray appears to have taken over the right guard spot after starter Byron Bell (knee) went on injured reserve Wednesday. McCray started last week. Another backup, Lucas Patrick, started at left guard for Lane Taylor, who has a foot injury.”
Against a fairly bad Falcons defense last week, Rodgers was pressured 16 times on the afternoon. Green Bay still put up 34 points but it was a sign that things were not ideal. Remember that Atlanta ranks 27th in the NFL in sacks. That means they’ve struggled putting pressure on the quarterback at all. That they were able to get after Rodgers fairly well doesn’t send the best message for what’s coming.
Keep in mind that Jared Goff had been sacked just 17 times this season for the Rams going into last Sunday night. The Bears defense dropped him four times and pressured him a total of 23. They are hunting right now, and odds are they smell blood in the water after what happened back in September.