What History tells us about Bears vs. Packers


by - Senior Writer -
The Packers have had the Bears number of late (William Glashe - USA Today Sports)
The Packers have had the Bears number of late (William Glashe - USA Today Sports)

Outside of making the postseason or a Superbowl, there are two weeks that Bears fans look forward to the most during the regular season. Those two weeks are their matchups against the hated Green Bay Packers as these teams continue to face off in the longest football rivalry. Although the Green Bay Packers have dominated this rivalry over the last 30 years with Brett Favre and Aaron Rodgers as their QBs, the Bears held the series lead until recently and now trail 101-95-6.

This rivalry goes back to the 1920s, as these teams have been facing for over 100 years. With that being said, it would be way too long to combine 100 years of history into one column. With that being the case, we will break the history up into two parts, highlighting the first 50 years for this week and the past 50 years when they meet again later in the season.

When these teams first started playing in 1921, the Bears were known as the Chicago Staleys as they secured a 20-0 win in their first meeting. That set the tone with the Bears losing just once over their first 11 meetings and posting a 7-3-1 record in the process. As 1928 arrived, the Packers started to get the upper hand as they went on to win six consecutive games at one point and eight of ten.

The 1930s saw both teams exchange body blows in the early going until the Bears ripped off six straight wins from 1933 into 1935. This was when the series started to become very balanced as both teams saw a fair amount of success, winning some games and then losing some. Once the 1940s began, the Bears again set the tone, winning five straight to open the decade and seven of nine in total.

Add in a tie, and the Bears went on to win 12 of 16 to start the 40s as they seemed to finally have the upper hand on the Packers. From 1945 to 1953, the Bears continued to flex their muscles, winning 12 of 14 games in that stretch, including multiple four-game winning streaks. In total, the Bears lost four times to the Packers in the 1950s with one tie to go with it, so it didn't seem like a rivalry at this point.

Following a 17-14 win to open the 1960s, the Packers started to turn the tide on the Bears. Green Bay not only won five straight after that, but won eight of 10 in that stretch. This was considered the Golden Era of Packers football as they not only started to get momentum, but went on to win the first two Superbowl's during that decade.

The Bears struggles in the 1960s carried over into the 70s, where the Packers won four of the first five and five of the first seven meetings between the two teams. Once we got to 1973, it seemed as if the teams would be splitting the rest of their meetings for the next decade until the Bears ripped off four straight wins and seven of eight to close out the 1970s on a positive note.

Part two of this column will feature the 1980s through now and will be released later this season when these teams meet again.

Looking back at what history has shown us with these teams, the record doesn't matter in these games. Whether in first place or last place, both of these teams will lay it on the line when they hit the field on Sunday. Although they respect each other as franchises and accomplished, they don't like each other, which shows up on the field every week.

This is just another game for the Packers, given the amount of success they have had over the better part of the last three decades. This is almost like a Super Bowl for the Bears as this could be seen as the team's measuring stick. No one wants to be compared to the Packers, especially if you are their biggest rivals like the Bears are.

However, the Bears have been chasing the Packers for years, and if they want to be taken seriously again, they need to figure out ways to knock off the green and gold. Chicago has to like their chances this weekend to get back on top for at least the time being as a win on Sunday not only ends the losing streak against Green Bay, but will put the Bears in first place in the NFC North at 4-2.

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