Despite the Chicago Bears 2001 record last year; the general NFL public favors the Green Bay Packers to win the NFC North Division. In an on-line poll at nfl.com, fans who voted on the question favored the Packers to win the division almost 2:1 over the Bears. After approximately 20,000 votes were cast at NFL.com on Tuesday June 25th, the percentages broke down this way: Packers 55.6%, Bears 28.0%, Vikings 11.2%, and finally Detroit with 5.2%.
The Bears have made strides to improve their club, adding depth at many positions on both sides of the ball, while the Packers have lost key components such as receivers Antonio Freeman and Bill Schroeder, while taking a huge risk on problem child WR Terry Glenn.
It seems as though many believe that last years Bears season was a fluke, but 2002 will prove to show the Bears true colors. The Packers have the edge at quarterback with future hall of famer Brett Favre, and Ahman Green is the more experienced running back. Besides these two positions, the Bears seem to match or surpass the Packers at most positions. From the offensive line, to the receiving corps on offense, the Bears seem to have an edge. On paper this looks to be an excellent match-up, and battle for the division.
Our first look into the classic rivalry will be Monday night October 7 2002, in Champaign, Illinois.