Rodgers, Packers knew Bears' defensive signals in blowout loss


Rodgers, Packers knew Bears' defensive signals in blowout loss

At different points of their 55-14 crushing of the Bears on Sunday night, Aaron Rodgers and the Packers offense sure seemed to have the Bears defense figured out, almost to the degree of knowing what the Bears were going to do.

In fact, they did. They could hear what the Bears were planning to do.

In the second quarter of Sunday night's 55-14 win at Lambeau Field, Rodgers exploited a blown coverage in the Bears defense and wound up hitting a wide-open Jordy Nelson for a 73-yard touchdown.

"It was a blown coverage. We could see that," Nelson said. "I might be wrong, but based off what we could hear them doing, Aaron checked to a different route and in that process, it sounded like they were checking to Cover-2.

"The way [Bears cornerback Tim Jennings] played it, he played Cover-2 and the safety still stayed 1-high."

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So did the Packers — or at least Rodgers — know the Bears' defensive signals?

That would sure explain the 10 touchdown passes and zero interceptions from Rodgers against the Bears this season in just over three halves of football.

"I don't want to say they played poorly," Nelson said. "I don't know what their schemes completely are. I'd like to just give us credit for executing the plays."

It's an ominous echo of the season-ending mistakes from the Bears defense coming against Rodgers and Co. The Bears' 2013 season came to a definitive end when Chris Conte did not get a defensive signal changing coverage and Aaron Rodgers hit Randall Cobb for a touchdown on fourth down in the final minute of the final game. Green Bay went on to capture the NFC North and the Bears went to their couches.

Rodgers has torn the Bears apart in both games this season, tossing four TD passes in Week 4 at Soldier Field and throwing for six scores in the first half Sunday night in Green Bay.

On the other side, the Green Bay defense still seems to have Jay Cutler and the Bears offense figured out, as well. Cutler turned the ball over three times as he lost to the Packers for the 10th time in 11 tries in a Bears uniform.

So...same old Jay?

"You can say that; I can't," Packers cornerback Tramon Williams said with a laugh. "...I get those questions a lot, I just don't know what to say about them. I guess we match up well against those guys. Time after time, we play well against them.

"Typically, it's usually a closer game, but this one was a total blowout. Even though we usually play well against them, you look up at the scoreboard and the game's still close.

"It was the total opposite today. It was fun to play this game and it was one we needed."

[MORE: Bears facing crisis “What now?” questions after humiliation in Green Bay]

While Williams is right, the Packers have played the Bears well in the Cutler Era; Green Bay has turned a corner this year and has absolutely dominated the NFL's oldest rivalry. Rodgers and Co. have outscored the Bears 93-31 in two games this season.

"The first game [Sept. 28] was actually tighter than [the scoreboard showed]. Those guys moved the ball well. They did some good things," Williams said. "But this time around, we adjusted to some of those things.

"They got a lot of good players over there. You gotta give them respect where respect is due. We just made some adjustments that we felt we needed to make. And we executed in all three phases of the game. Any time you get a team doing that, it's going to be tough to beat."

While the Bears are still searching for their identity in the midst of what is quickly becoming a lost season, the Packers feel like they're coming into their own.

"I think it's just our consistency and knowing what we have, knowing the guys in this locker room and the mentality," Cobb said. "We know who we are and we believe in each other and I think we've created our identity over the last few weeks."

"You can't go into a game thinking you'd get up six touchdowns in the first half," Nelson said. "We had a feeling that we'd be able to be successful if we did what we were supposed to do. And that's what happened."

SportsTalk Live Podcast: Is Teddy Bridgewater too expensive for the Bears?


SportsTalk Live Podcast: Is Teddy Bridgewater too expensive for the Bears?

Laurence Holmes, JJ Stankevitz and Mark Grote join Kap on the panel.

0:00 - The pressure continues to mount on Rob Manfred as the Astros scandal lingers. He apologized on Tuesday but should that be enough for him to keep his job?

17:00 - Drew Brees is heading back to New Orleans, so Teddy Bridgewater will be looking for a new home. The guys discuss if he'll be too expensive for the Bears. if he is, who could come to Chicago to join Mitch in the QB room at Halas Hall?

Listen here or in the embedded player below.

Sports Talk Live Podcast


TE Greg Olsen signed with Seattle Seahawks, previously hoped Bears would contact him

TE Greg Olsen signed with Seattle Seahawks, previously hoped Bears would contact him

Former Bears first-round pick TE Greg Olsen officially signed a one-year, $7 million contract with the Seattle Seahawks. Olsen previously played with the Bears and Panthers over a 13-year NFL career.

After mutually parting ways with the Panthers, the 34-year-old hoped the Bears, the team that drafted him in 2007, would reach out about signing him once he hit free agency. He told ESPN’s Waddle and Silvy that he wanted to come home to Chicago but wasn't contacated by Bears' management.

RELATED: Now that he's retired, what's next for Kyle Long?

One of the Bears biggest needs this offseason is an upgrade at TE and Olsen’s pass-catching experience along with his working knowledge of the Bears' organization makes him a seemingly ideal fit for the team. Ryan Pace disagreed and the chance for a reunion is gone for good. While his age is showing (he appeared in only 16 games in 2017 and 2018 combined), Olsen is still a stronger receiver than anyone currently on the Bears depth chart.

Interestingly enough, one of Olsen's best moments as a Bear came during Chicago's playoff win against the Seahawks in January 2011 when he scored a touchdown after catching a 58-yard pass from Jay Cutler in the first quarter.  

We will see if Pace regrets not giving Olsen a call. It would be the breakup movie of the season. Too bad the Bears would be playing the part of the groveling ex-boyfriend. Until then, Bears’ fans can imagine a scenario where Pace or head coach Matt Nagy chases after Olsen in the rain (which makes perfect sense, seeing as he’ll be in Seattle), holding a boom box over his head, begging him to return to Soldier Field. That’s the sports rom-com we all deserve in 2020. 

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