The black and blue division is properly named. It contains some of the best division rivalries football has to offer.
While one team seems to be the odd-team out, others step up and make up the difference.
The main focus of the "black and blue division" seems to surround three teams: the Bears, Packers, and Vikings. Although the Lions have had their minute long claims to fame, they never have seemed to find a place in the NFL as a whole.
Over the years, there have been some memorable games and insane plays.
How about Green Bay's Antonio Freeman's circus catch off a deflection from Vikings' defender Cris Dishman for an overtime win on November 6, 2000?
How about Minnesota's goal line stand against the Bears that changed the fate of the 2009 NFC North division champion?
Then there's the famous "YOU KICKED IT TO HIM?" line from any announcer on any punt or kickoff return from Devin Hester in 2006 and early 2007. That guy can flat out run pasy any guy in the NFL.
It doesn't seem to matter how bad or good one of these teams is, you can just about bet you're in for one hell of a ride. Let's take a look at some of the most heated rivalries in the NFL.
Green Bay Packers vs. Chicago Bears (Bears lead series 91-80-6)
The longest running rivalry in the NFL has certainly produced some great football players. The rivalry contains a whopping 48 members of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, the most of any rivalry by far.
One of the most memorable games in their long history came in 1999. The first game since the passing of the greatest running back of all time in Walter Payton, the Bears defeated the Packers 14-13 on a blocked field goal attempt by defensive tackle Bryan Robinson. It marked their first win against the Packers in nearly six years.
The NFC North also has a new rivalry in the making with two of the best young quarterbacks in the game, Aaron Rodgers and Jay Cutler. These two quarterbacks can put up some impressive numbers in a hurry. They are without a doubt and by a landslide the two best quarterbacks in the NFC North.
Next season will be one to watch for indeed. As the Packers are switching defenses, the Bears have altered their offense. Which one will pan out better?
Minnesota Vikings vs. Green Bay Packers (Packers lead series 47-45-1)
They work right across the river from one another, essentially anyway. There are fans in Green Bay that have to travel to Minnesota just to get away from all those Cheeseheads. Then there are those Packers' fans in Minnesota that drive hundreds of miles to gather in the Holy Grail of stadiums, Lambeau Field.
The intense rivalry is filled with moments to be forever remembered. Basically any game that featured Brett Favre against the Vikings went in Favre's favor. He always seemed to have the Vikings' number and had the most memorable moments of his life when he broke the all-time touchdown record against them on September 30, 2007.
Although I don't expect it to last much longer, a new rivalry was created in 2007 when Adrian Peterson was injured by Packers' cornerback Al Harris. The injury kept Peterson out for nearly three weeks.
Peterson got his revenge the following season by literally running over Al Harris on Monday Night Football in week one.
Chicago Bears vs. Minnesota Vikings (Vikings lead series 51-42-2)
The rivalry was definitely renewed last season. The two best teams in the NFC North feature the two best running backs in the NFC North, Adrian Peterson and Matt Forte.
While Minnesota always seems to break one long touchdown run against them, the Bears always seem to make an equally great play on special teams or defense. It hardly ever seems to be a one-sided affair.
A historic moment occurred last season that sparked the renewal of an intense rivalry. After a strong goal line stand, the Vikings tied an NFL record with a 99-yard touchdown reception by ex-Bears' player, Bernard Berrian.
Lions vs. Bears, Packers, Vikings (the Lions do not lead any series)
Okay, maybe these games are a little less than exciting. Hopefully the Lions can muster something up to be competitive soon. If any team should be on the move, it's these guys. Their football team is terrible and has been for nearly its entire history.
There is not one good rivalry game here. Why even bother watching them play? They are pitiful and painful to watch. Sorry Lions' fans. I know there are some die-hards out there, but how much more pain can you take?
These are games that you cannot miss a single play because something extraordinary always seems to happen. Whether is a gut-wrenching interception by Charles Woodson, a back-breaking hit by Lance Briggs, or a superb touchdown run by Peterson, these games are sure to please people of all ages.
So I ask you football fans, which is the best rivalry in the NFC North?
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