For the first time in over 30 years, the Chicago Bears will not have to deal with a Green Bay Packers team led by a Hall of Fame-bound quarterback. Aaron Rodgers is a New York Jet, and Brett Favre is retired and still in hot water.
For one lifelong Bears fan, Rodgers being gone is music to his ears.
“The fact that Aaron Rodgers is out of the picture,” said Brandon Willis, “I think it’s now time to dominate the Packers first and foremost. It’s Justin Fields’ time to establish some dominance over that organization.”
Thanks to the NFL’s 2023 Schedule Release, we now know that Fields and the Bears will get their first crack at the Packers and starting quarterback Jordan Love to open the new NFL season on Sunday, September 10, at Soldier Field.
What’s odd is that the next time they’ll play Green Bay is Week 18, with the date to be determined. Yes, you read that right. It will be Bears-Packers to open the season and Bears-Packers to close it out.
Green Bay might be on a different quarterback by then.
The Bears are Must-See Primetime TV (Once Again)
The intrigue around Fields and the retooled squad have NFL schedule makers believing that the team will be ready for the national spotlight with four primetime games:
- Thursday Night Football at the Washington Commanders on October 5;
- Sunday Night Football at the Los Angeles Chargers on October 29;
- Thursday Night Football (again) hosting the Carolina Panthers on November 9
- and Monday Night Football at the Minnesota Vikings on November 27.
The Bears have 4 primetime games and 3 late-afternoon kicks.
Fun fact: This is the first Week 1 home game with a late-afternoon kick for the Bears since 1995!
— Kevin Fishbain (@kfishbain) May 12, 2023
New Division Rival?
The Bears will have no primetime games against the Detroit Lions. But when the teams clash on November 19 and December 10, those contests might decide who wins the NFC North.
These aren’t your granddad’s, dad’s or big brother’s Lions, perpetual NFC North bottomfeeders.
They won eight of their final ten games last year and have one of the most talented rosters in the division.
It’s why the Lions get to open the NFL season against the Super Bowl Champion Kansas City Chiefs, and it’s also why they have five primetime games.
The prevailing belief is that those boys will be for real, and the Bears will need to be ready. For Chicago to own the North, they have to declaw Detroit.
The last time the coronation of a British monarch took place, the Detroit Lions won the NFL championship.
— Detroit Free Press (@freep) May 6, 2023
As for the Vikings…
Ain’t nobody really worried about the Minnesota Vikings, said Willis.
At the End of The Day
Echoing the decree that Ryan Poles issued when he was introduced as the Bears GM, Willis said, “We’re going to take the north and not give it back.”
“By next year, we should be what the Packers were for the better part of 15 years — to be top 10 in the league moving forward.”
The Bears’ 2023 Season Schedule
What do you think will be their record?
Hot off the grill 🔥 pic.twitter.com/NRt0rxhPqR
— Chicago Bears (@ChicagoBears) May 12, 2023
Oh, and kudos to the social media team for its ode to “The Bear.” Well done — no pun intended.