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Bears vs Packers final score: Green Bay edges out Chicago 31-23

The Bears put up a good fight, but at the end of the day, couldn't keep up with the NFC North champs.

Dennis Wierzbicki-USA TODAY Sports

The Chicago Bears opened the 2015 season in style-- trotting out their new 3-4 defense and their new Adam Gase-run offense in front of a home crowd at Soldier Field, and squaring off against old-time foe Green Bay Packers.

From a pure-play talent perspective, the Packers are clearly a better team.  But Chicago's new head coach John Fox, and his hotshot pair of coordinators-- Gase and DC Vic Vagio-- kept the Bears in this one from the outset.

It didn't hurt that Green Bay consistently shot themselves in the foot with penalties, but don't take anything away from the Bears. The offense had sustained drives under quarterback Jay Cutler, who didn't have Rodgers' numbers but played incredibly well.  Incredibly well, except for that 4th quarter interception to Clay Matthews.

Cutler was under control the entire game, and played with a sense of calmness that we haven't seen since he arrived in Chicago.  A flawless game, until that INT.

Will they win the NFC North and make the playoffs? That's still a stretch and there is a long way to go.  But against the perennial NFC North champs, the Bears had few mistakes and responded well to good coaching.  Stay tuned...

Final stats:

Jay Cutler:  18/36, 225 yds, 1 TD, 1 INT

Matt Forte:  24 rushes, 141 yds, 1 TD

Marquess Wilson: 2 rec, 59 yds

Alshon Jeffery: 5 rec, 78 yds

Eddie Royal: 1 rec, 8 yds

Martellus Bennett: 5 rec, 55 yds, 1 TD

Aaron Rodgers:  18/23, 189 yds, 3 TD

Eddie Lacy:  19 rushes, 85 yds, 1 TD

Davante Adams: 4 rec, 59 yds

James Jones: 4 rec, 51 yds, 2 TD

UP NEXT: Next Sunday (September 20th) versus Arizona Cardinals at Soldier Field (12:00pm CT)