Both teams are coming off nail-biters, although the similarities from week 12 end there. The Packers battled back from a big deficit on the road to beat Jacksonville on Monday Night Football. Offensive fireworks including three Favre TD passes, his game-winning touchdown run and a memorable scoring catch by Bill Schroeder. The defense rose to the occasion to seal the victory as the Packers finally wrestled control from the Jaguars in primetime.
Chicago, on the other hand, escaped the embarrassment of being the Detroit Lions' first victim only by virtue of three missed FGs by Jason Hanson. The formerly-reliable placekicker missed a mid-range kick in the final seconds which would have sent the game into OT.
That doesn't mean the Bears don't have momentum. They have won three straight - since falling to the Packers. They had had won six in a row going into that contest and thus have won nine of their last 10 games.
What should we expect when the highly-charged showdown kicks off at noon?
Look for the Bears and QB Jim Miller to attack downfield. A conservative passing attack was the number one complaint leveled by fans and media after the Nov. 11 meeting. Following that game, the Bears quickly changed their tune vs. Tampa. Miller found Marty Booker for three long TDs. We'll find out today if it was the Bears' game plan or the Packer defense which limited Chicago's passing attack to 201 yards last time.
Green Bay knows that neither Anthony Thomas or James Allen – both good running backs – is a big threat receiving out of the backfield. That means the Bears may not be able to stretch the Packer D too far on obvious passing downs. Meanwhile, if Chicago feels the need to take more shots downfield, it has to come from somewhere, and in this case that means fewer carries for RBs.
When the Packers have the ball, the keys are no secret. Favre must produce an effort on par with his amazing day vs. Baltimore at Lambeau Field. Ahman Green won't have an easy go against the Bears, but that didn't seem to bother him last week. Although he was limited to a season-low 31 yards on the ground, he still found a way to hurt the Jaguars as a receiver. Instead of taking turns as stars and stalls, the Green Bay receivers must step it up together stop Bears safety Mike Brown from making a name for himself in Packer territory..