I’m amazed that I even have to write this article.
The Chicago Bears hosting the Green Bay Packers in the NFL’s 100th season opener makes the most sense from a marketing perspective, from a historical perspective, and most importantly, from a ratings perspective.
This is not up for debate.
I’m not even going to use this space to address the idiotic notion suggested by some that the game should be held in Green Bay; I gave my thoughts about that on Twitter.
I expect dumb takes from some Packer fans, and Packer homers that cover the Green Bay Packers that are too caught up in their own delusional world to understand the big picture of the National Football League, but when a “national” publication like Sports Illustrated chimes in with something so stupid as to suggest that the Bears and Packers shouldn’t open the 100th season, I had give my take.
SI’s Jimmy Traina wrote, “No disrespect whatsoever to the Packers and Bears, but this is a bad choice.” He believes that the Cleveland Browns should be the featured team on that Thursday night season opener.
No disrespect whatsoever to Jimmy Trania and Sports Illustrated, but that is an idiotic choice.
The Browns should be an exciting team in 2019, but from a historical standpoint, and let’s face it, the kickoff to the NFL’s 100th season is a celebration of the last 100 years, this Browns franchise isn’t even the same Browns franchise that was founded in 1946. That team moved to Baltimore.
Chicago played Green Bay 52 times before the Browns played their first game in the All-America Football Conference, so historically speaking, the Browns can’t touch the Bears or the Packers.
The Bears are one of two charter franchises still around today, with the other being the Arizona Cardinals (ne’ Chicago Cardinals). The Bears’ franchise started football operations as the Decatur Staleys in 1920, moved to Chicago the following year, then finally became the Bears in 1922 when the NFL was officially founded.
A Bears vs. Cardinals game would have been interesting for NFL purists, but that’s not a rivalry game anyone could get behind.
The Bears and Packers have played each other more than any two teams, 198 times, and the rivalry is close with Green Bay holding a slight overall edge 96-94-6 (1-1 in the postseason). While the two franchises haven’t always been good at the same time, this year’s match-up features the defending NFC North Champs against one of the best quarterbacks to ever play the game.
The Chicago Bears playing the Green Bay Packers to open the 2019 season in Soldier Field is a no-brainer.
Anyone that tries to tell you otherwise is an idiot.