Green Bay Packers: 5 Keys For Victory Against the Chicago Bears
The Green Bay Packers and the Chicago Bears are host to the NFL's oldest rivalry. The two teams will face off against each other again at Soldier Field Sunday afternoon. This article break down five keys for victory for the Packers against their rival, the Bears.
These two teams played each other three times last year. Chicago got the best of the Packers the first time, and Green Bay got the Bears' number when it mattered most to get it into the playoffs and into the Super Bowl.
Key No. 1: Attack Jay Cutler
The Chicago Bears have given up a league-high 11 sacks, and has been hit 16 times. That's a lot of time that Jay Cutler has been on the ground this year.
The Packers defense has seven sacks on the season. Not bad.
This is perfect timing for the Green Bay's defense to get back on track. Especially, since it has given up 400 yards a game.
By attacking Cutler, the Packers can make him make errant throws that hopefully turn into interceptions and no big yardage.
Plus, attacking Cutler takes a huge amount of pressure off the secondary that is missing Nick Collins for the season, and Tramon Williams, who could be out for a second straight week.
Key No. 2: Don't Commit Penalities
Last year, when the Green Bay Packers played the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field, they had 18 penalties. If I remember right, there were a lot of pass interference penalties on Green Bay, and it helped Chicago win.
Chicago was the smarter team, and the Packers were not.
However, now I think the Packers are a more disciplined team. Head coach Mike McCarthy does a great job with how he handles his players, and makes them make smart decisions.
You also have to remember that going on the road—especially at Soldier Field in a rivalry game—is tough. It is loud, and you are going to get caught off guard.
The Packers have to stay focused, as this is a rivalry game, and every game in the NFC North matters.
Key No. 3: Start Fast and Keep the Lead
The Green Bay Packers start fast some games, or start slow and finish strong.
For instance, the Packers had 21-7 lead to open the game against the New Orlean Saints, but the Saints were in it until the last second when the defense finally made a big play.
Green Bay was lucky last week when it got down and trailed the Carolina Panthers 13-7 at halftime, and came back to win.
Luckily, for the Packers, they have an explosive offense and an experienced defense, unlike the young team that Carolina has.
Against Chicago, it might be harder for the Packers. The defense is better and can score points if you put the ball on the ground or make stupid throws.
Their offense can score points and be explosive with Matt Forte and when Jay Cutler is being kept upright in the pocket, too.
It will be tough, but just start early, and build the lead, Green Bay.
No. 4: Don't Give Up the Big Play
The Green Bay Packers are rattled a little bit on defense. Especially, in the secondary with the loss of Nick Collins for the season, and Tramon Williams could be out another week.
Now, it will be up to Charles Woodson, former Defensive Player of the Year, to get Green Bay's secondary back on track.
It's young, but experienced. When Williams finally gets back, the cornerbacks are one of the best in the game. Meanwhile, Sam Shields can play, too.
At safety, without Collins, Morgan Burnett and Charlie Peprah will the mainstays. Burnett has had a great start to the season with 20 tackles and a sack to start the year.
Peprah will start for Collins, and received experience last year when Burnett went down for the season.
Dom Capers has to get his defense playing better, as they cannot give up 400 yards a game as they have through the first two game against New Orleans and Carolina.
Key No. 5: Win the Special Team Battle
The speedy, athletic veteran Devin Hester is going up against the speedy, athletic youngster Randall Cobb.
Both are nuts. They can change games. With Hester, teams learn not to kick to him, yet somehow, they still do.
Cobb is still young and coming off a quiet game against Carolina, compared to his record-breaking game against New Orleans with his 108-yard kickoff return.
Whoever wins the special team battle, might just win this game. The game might come down to who has the best field position.
I know one thing: I cannot wait to see these two waiting for kickoffs and punts come Sunday.