Green Bay Packers still own the Bears: What went Right, What Went Wrong?

GREEN BAY, WISCONSIN - DECEMBER 12: Aaron Rodgers #12 of the Green Bay Packers reacts as he walks off the field following the 45-30 victory over the Chicago Bears in the NFL game at Lambeau Field on December 12, 2021 in Green Bay, Wisconsin. (Photo by Quinn Harris/Getty Images)
GREEN BAY, WISCONSIN - DECEMBER 12: Aaron Rodgers #12 of the Green Bay Packers reacts as he walks off the field following the 45-30 victory over the Chicago Bears in the NFL game at Lambeau Field on December 12, 2021 in Green Bay, Wisconsin. (Photo by Quinn Harris/Getty Images) /

It was a game that may go down as one of the wildest and most extraordinary games in the NFL’s most storied rivalry between the Green Bay Packers and the Chicago Bears.

After a slow start in the 204th meeting, the Green Bay Packers were able to outscore the Chicago Bears 24-3 in the second half, winning 45-30 and improving to 10-3, closing in on yet another NFC North division title.

Let’s check out what went right in the Green Bay Packers’ big win Sunday night against the Chicago Bears.

Rasul Douglas is balling out.  

Packers fans, remember in early October when the rumor mill started to swirl with the New England Patriots on the brink of a trade with the Packers surrounding all-pro cornerback Stephon Gilmore?

I most certainly do.

Then, fast forward a few hours after the Patriots decided to trade Gilmore to the Panthers, setting Packers twitter on fire. Packers General Manager Brian Gutekunst answered the bell as he picked up a guy most of us have never heard of in Rasul Douglas off the Arizona Cardinals practice squad.

On Sunday, Douglas returned yet another interception for a touchdown, making two this year, joining the hall of fame great Herb Adderly.

According to PFF ($), Douglas received the highest grade (90.6) on the defensive side of the ball for a unit that only allowed 3 points in the second half. Douglas was only targeted two times all night, one resulting in six points for the Packers, the other, a dropped interception.

The jury is still out, but this could be a marvelous in-season addition by Gutekunst.

The Packers’ pass rush was in the face of Justin Fields all night. 

According to Next Gen Stats, the Packers pass rush pressured Bears quarterback Justin Fields on 19 of his 35 dropbacks (54.3%), their highest team pressure rate in a game since Week 16, 2019.

They were led by linebacker Preston Smith, who totaled a team-high eight pressures, two sacks, and a forced fumble.

Smith wasn’t alone, Rashan Gary added seven pressures, and Dean Lowry provided five with one quarterback hit.

Without arguably their best pass rusher in Za’Darius Smith, who is still recovering from back surgery, this unit, as a whole, has been tremendous this season.

Sunday night may have been the most impressive the pass rush has looked all season.

Packers Quarterback Aaron Rodgers was unstoppable.

After declaring he “owned” the Bears in a win-clinching week six rushing touchdown, the spotlight was going to be indeed on Rodgers in this matchup.

As usual, he accepted the challenge and proved to be too much for a questionable Bears secondary, especially after Bears pass-rusher Robert Quinn mocked his infamous belt celebration.

Rodgers started slow but responded before halftime with an absolute beauty from 38-yards out to wide receiver Davante Adams, which seemed to ignite a monstrous second half.

Rodgers led the offensive charge completing 29 out of his 37 passes, 341 yards, and four touchdowns.

What does the rivalry mean to Rodgers?

"“It does mean a lot to me. It really does. The majority of stats don’t mean much, but this rivary does mean a lot to me because I;m almost an adult in Green Bay – I’ve lived here here for 17 years and started 14. I know how much this rivarly means to our fans, and to be part of it has been really special.”"

Words of advice for opponents: When will you learn to stop mocking the belt?

It was a big win against an NFC North foe, but not everything went according to plan. Let’s take a look at what went wrong Sunday at Lambeau Field.

The Packers’ special teams were nothing short of a dumpster fire.

You may never see as many mistakes in a whole season as you did within 60 minutes of Sunday’s night special teams debacle.

From start to finish, it was a complete and utter embarrassment. The Bears started five offensive drives at the 40 yard-line or better. They couldn’t cover any punt or kickoff returns, allowing a total of 213 yards and a Bears franchise record-setting 97-punt return, which was fielded at the Bears 5 yard line.

It didn’t just stop there. Usually, the sure-footed punter Corey Bojorquez struggled as well. His average dropped 3.2 yards after shanking a punt for a net gain of 22 yards Sunday night.

Amari Rodgers’ rookie season struggles were also on full display, muffing a punt off his facemask in the fourth quarter, which was negated by a Chicago penalty.

Special teams have been a constant headache for the Packers, from place-kicker Mason Crosby to Bojorquez to kick coverage.

Any hope for a title may rest in how this unit responds.

The Packers are sitting comfortably in the NFC North, but with much higher aspirations, their hopes may sit on the news of multiple injured star players to make their return. 

The eyes of millions will be focused on the injury report this week, as the long-awaited return of Jaire Alexander, David Bakhtiari, and Za’Darius Smith could be on the horizon.

The Green Bay Packers will get set to face off in Baltimore (8-5) next week at 3:25 PM CST.