The Bears Clinched the NFC North with Depth, Determination ... and a Butt Sack (and Other Bullets)

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The Bears Clinched the NFC North with Depth, Determination … and a Butt Sack (and Other Bullets)

Chicago Bears

I woke up, pinched myself, opened my laptop, and realized yesterday wasn’t a dream. The Chicago Bears won the NFC North and are headed back to the postseason for the first time since 2010. A pleasant good morning to everyone, especially fans of the NFC North champs.

  • Ain’t no party like a Club Dub party, cuz a Club Dub party don’t stop:

  • They don’t make hype videos for nobodies:

  • If you wondered how it sounded on the radio, here is Jeff Joniak

  • One of my favorite things about Sunday’s win is that the team’s stars came to play, starting with their quarterback. Mitch Trubisky plays the most important position on the field and he played it perfectly on Sunday. Trubisky completed 71.4 percent of his passes (20 of 28) for 235 yards, 2 touchdowns, 0 interceptions, and a 120.4 passer rating. He also didn’t make any throws that made me yelp “what are you thinking, dude!?” and while that’s not an official stat (yet) maybe it should be.
  • Trubisky now has four games with a passer rating of 120 or better this season, which is a single-season franchise record. Move over Sid Luckman (1943), Rudy Bukich (1965), and Erik Kramer (1995) … you’ve got a new leader in the clubhouse.
  • This is the kind of big-boy play that allows you to dream on Trubisky’s upside:

  • Let’s not mince words, people. Khalil Mack sacked Aaron Rodgers with his BUTT … while being held:

  • Butt sack > Butt fumble.
  • In case you were wondering why a team would give up two first-round picks and hand out the largest contract ever given to a defensive player, just check out Mack’s numbers against the Packers this season: 3.5 sacks, 3 quarterback hits, two tackles-for-loss, a forced fumble (and recovery), and a pick-six. The deal is basically paying for itself with every Aaron Rodgers take-down.
  • Meanwhile, someone at Halas Hall needs to send Jon Gruden a fruit basket with a thank you card inside just to really drive home how much everyone in Chicago appreciates the deal.
  • Safety Eddie Jackson made the play of the game with a fourth-quarter interception. Beyond the importance of ending Rodgers’ streak of interception-free football, it also helped exorcise some demons. There wasn’t a Bears fan out there whose heart didn’t skip a beat when that ball was deflected. And for many Bears fans who have been tortured long enough by Packers quarterbacks, it wouldn’t have been much of a surprise had the ball magically landed in the hands of a well-placed Packers pass-catcher. But this time was different. This time, it was a Bears defender who was Johnny-on-the-spot with the interception. More on Jackson’s injury later.
  • All that defensive energy the Bears were bringing took Aaron Rodgers off his game. Rodgers completed just 59.5 percent of his passes, averaged just 6.5 yards per attempt, posted a 68.9 passer rating, and was held without a touchdown pass for the first time all year. He missed open receivers left and right and couldn’t connect on the deep-ball passes we have all grown accustomed to him nailing over the years. I suppose it’s difficult to get it in gear when you’re being sacked five times and knocked down on nine other occasions. The Bears defense brought the heat and didn’t stop until the clock hit triple zeros. Now, that is what it looks like when you finish.
  • I opined the Bears were the better team for 55 minutes when they played the Packers in Week 1. On Sunday, the Bears were the better team for 60 minutes. Full stop.
  • So much for that Week 1 loss setting the Bears back 100 years. Ain’t that right, Cris Collinsworth?

  • Frankly, the Bears have been the better team all year. Save for quarterback Aaron Rodgers and receiver Davante Adams, how many Packers players would you choose over guys currently on the Bears roster. If we allow ourselves to be honest about the situation, it’s a struggle to find them. There might be a compelling case for left tackle David Bakhtiari, but Charles Leno Jr. is no slouch at that position and is building off last year’s career year with another strong season. Other than that, the Bears are as deep and talented as any team in the NFL. It’s one of the many reasons they won the NFC North.
  • There are so many highlights to go through, but I can’t overlook how the Bears beat the Packers at their own game at the end of the first half. Green Bay has made a killing over the years scoring touchdowns on the last possession of the first half and first possession of the second half. But it was the Bears defense that made a key stop late in the first half and put the offense in a position to string together a touchdown drive late in the first half to extend the lead to 14-3. And at the start of the second half, Green Bay was limited to a field goal. There aren’t too many better scenarios you could have drawn up there.
  • At what point does Bears GM Ryan Pace start accepting apology cards? Pace has taken a ton of crap in the first three years of his contract (sometimes justified), only to put together a division champion in Year 4. The mix of impact draft picks, free agents, trades, and a home run coaching hire has the Bears are where they are today. It’s not like Pace didn’t deserve fair criticism at the start of his career, but if you dished it out, it’s only fair to tip your cap where credit is due.
  • You knew it was going to be a good day when an Alabama football star rocks the baseball jersey of an Auburn legend:

  • Brett loves Tarik Cohen the way I love Javy Baez:

  • Another great worst-to-first story is in the books:

  • What. A. Moment.


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Author: Luis Medina

Luis Medina is a Writer at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at@lcm1986.