Packers To Continue Dominance Against Bears

Rodgers was not at his peak

The Chicago Bears and the Green Bay Packers kick off week four of the NFL season as the two sides clash at Lambeau Field.

The Packers staged a comeback against the Cincinnati Bengals to secure their second win of the term. Aaron Rodgers threw a pick-six in the contest to put his 21-7 down on home soil heading into half-time.

However, the 33-year-old brought Green Bay back into the match in the second half. He tied the game with a late strike to Jordy Nelson in the endzone before moving them into field-goal range with a deep pass to Geronimo Allison in overtime

Mason Crosby kicked the game-winning field goal to get the Packers to winning ways in the NFL.

The Bears got their campaign off and running with a victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers. John Fox’s men put in a fine performance to knock off the AFC North outfit.

Marcus Cooper could have put his side in command after he collected a blocked field goal before the interval. However, Cooper celebrated too soon on the edge of the endzone and fumbled the ball, losing four points in the process.

Pittsburgh almost mounted a comeback, but Tarik Cohen weaved through their defense in overtime before Jordan Howard secured the win.

The rivalry between the Packers and the Bears has been fierce over the years. However, it was been a one-sided contest in recent seasons. Mike McCarthy’s men have won 12 out of the last 15 matches between the teams and will be aiming to make it 13 in their last 16 on Thursday.

We’ll now break down the contest, looking at both sides’ start to the campaign.

Green Bay Packers

Rodgers was not at his peak

The Packers needed a strong performance in the second half to see off the Bengals. Their defense was cut open in the first half by Andy Dalton and his offense. Rodgers made an uncharacteristic mistake when he was intercepted by William Jackson for a touchdown.

However, the quality of the quarterback was on full display in the second half. Rodgers made a number of outstanding throws to drag the Packers back into the game. He connected with Nelson in the endzone to tie the contest before setting up the game-winning field goal.

Green Bay have been up-and-down to start the campaign. The victory was an important one for Rodgers as his record coming from behind in games had been extremely poor. He has now improved his record to 1-7 in overtime matches.

The Packers’ character and ability to play under pressure has arguably been one of their biggest issues in recent seasons. Their playoff defeats have highlighted those issues with the club struggling to overcome adversity in those contests.

However, the win over the Bengals could be a starting point to produce a resilient outfit for the first time since the 2010 season when the club won the Super Bowl with a plethora of injuries.

Allison had a breakout performance in the victory over the Bengals. He recorded 122 receiving yards, including the decisive catch that set up Crosby’s field goal. Adding him to the offense alongside Davante Adams, Randall Cobb and Nelson will make the Packers even more fearsome.

Defensively Green Bay still have their issues, but have made improvements from last term. The unit only needs to support Rodgers and the offense to have success this season. Expect another solid outing from the defense against Chicago.

Chicago Bears

Howard holds the key

Credit: USA TODAY Sports

The Bears secured a vital win over the Steelers in week three to get off the mark in the campaign. Chicago had began the season with a close defeat to the Falcons, being held at the goalline late in the fourth quarter. Jon Fox’s men were then hammered by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on the road, which left them vulnerable to dropping to 0-3 against the in-form Steelers.

Howard continued his impressive start to his career, carrying the club to the victory with a 138-yard performance. Quarterback Mike Glennon threw for only 101 yards, putting the pressure on the Bears’ backs to deliver. Howard and Cohen rose to the occasion to help deliver the win, while the defense also played their part in limiting Ben Roethlisberger and Le’Veon Bell.

The Bears had to overcome a huge mistake from Cooper in the contest. He could have put his side 14 points ahead at the break had he completed his return into the endzone. However, his showboating cost his side four points and allowed the Steelers to come back into the game. It was testament to Chicago’s character that they managed to secure the win in overtime.

Fox’s men still have a lot of flaws in their game and will have an incredible display to beat the Packers. There were encouraging signs on defense as Bryce Callahan notched an interception, sack and a forced fumble against the Steelers. Willie Young and Pernell McPhee got to Roethlisberger and will need to continue that level of form throughout the term.

The NFC North outfit have been underwhelming during Fox’s tenure. However, back-to-back wins over the Steelers and Packers would suggest that the tide is beginning to turn.

Betting Options

The Packers were not on form against Bengals – an unusual sign for a team that usually dominates on home soil. Rodgers and his receivers did not click into gear until the second half after being stymied by Cincinnati’s defense.

That will not continue against the Bears as Rodgers has dissected their defense with regularity in recent seasons. Chicago will hope to control the tempo of the contest with their running game, using the talent of their backs Howard and Cohen.

However, if Green Bay establish an early lead it will force Glennon into throwing situations. That’s not a match-up the Bears will want to occur given his poor start to the campaign. The Bears have to keep the game as close as possible otherwise the Packers will runaway with the contest.

Rodgers’ was not quite at the peak of his powers against the Bengals, but back him to put the Bears to the sword at odds of -325   with BetOnline. The Packers’ offense had an off day, but should be able to rack up the points against Fox’s men – take Green Bay with the -10.5 spread with +150   with 32Red.

Martellus Bennett has had a quiet start to his career with the Packers. However, he will be desperate to perform against his former club. Therefore take him to score a touchdown anytime with SkyBet at +300 .

Tips Summary

Green Bay Packers To Beat Chicago Bears
Thursday 28th September 2017 20:30 ET (Friday 29th September 2017 01:30 BST)
Odds: -325

Green Bay Packers To Cover -10.5 Spread
Thursday 28th September 2017 20:30 ET (Friday 29th September 2017 01:30 BST)
Odds: +150

Martellus Bennett To Score Touchdown Time
Thursday 28th September 2017 20:30 ET (Friday 29th September 2017 01:30 BST)
Odds: +300