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The New Year’s Day Den, January 1, 2021

I don’t know about you folks, but I for one am glad that 2020 is over with!

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New Year Celebrations in Chicago Photo by Bilgin S. Sasmaz/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

THE DAILY SPONGIE SPECIAL

BEARRRSSSS

Difficult Choice Facing Chicago Bears on Offensive Line - Sports Illustrated - The Chicago Bears will have to decide whether to disrupt their effective offensive line by returning a former starter who is now healthy or maintaining the status quo as Bobby Massie becomes available.

Chicago Bears Linebacker Roquan Smith Pushes Past the Snubbings - Sports Illustrated - The big plays from Chicago Bears linebacker Roquan Smith keep on coming, just like the snubbings and lack of respect.

Chicago Bears players discuss matchup against Green Bay Packers, chance to make playoffs - ChicagoBears.com - Bears players discuss their approach to Sunday’s high-stakes matchup with the Green Bay Packers.

Chalk Talk: What’s the intensity level for Chicago Bears ahead of Week 17 matchup with Green Bay Packers? - ChicagoBears.com - Senior writer Larry Mayer describes a heightened intensity level at Halas Hall, the importance of pressuring Aaron Rodgers and the recent improvement by the Bears offense on third down.

Packers at Bears Game Preview - Da Bears Blog - Three Things the Bears Must Do To Win

Allen Robinson sits out Bears’ practice; Khalil Mack limited - 670 The Score - Bears top receiver Allen Robinson sat out of practice Thursday with a hamstring issue, while star edge rusher Khalil Mack was limited in his work as the team continues to take extra precautions with key players.

Tailgater: Bears’ present, future at stake in pivotal finale - 670 The Score - The result of their game against the Packers on Sunday could have massive long-term ramifications for the Bears, who can secure a playoff berth with a win – or be sent into a state of uncertainty and an offseason of potential organizational overhaul.

Report: Former Bears CB Richardson arrested on murder charge - 670 The Score - Former Super Bowl champion Bears cornerback Michael Richardson has been arrested by Phoenix police on a murder charge, ABC-15 in Arizona reported.

Column: Chicago Bears must get past Aaron Rodgers, Packers - Chicago Tribune - If the Chicago Bears beat the Green Bay Packers on Sunday, they're in the playoffs. But in their way stands Aaron Rodgers, who is thriving in Year 2 of coach Matt LaFleur's offense. The quarterback is a favorite to win the NFL MVP and has the Packers in position to earn the No. 1 seed in the NFC.

Mitch Trubisky: Chicago Bears quarterback's future at stake - Chicago Tribune - Mitch Trubisky, the No. 2 pick in the 2017 NFL draft — the one that repeatedly has been scrutinized and debated and second-guessed for four years — might be playing his last game in a Chicago Bears uniform Sunday against the Green Bay Packers. Or maybe not. Maybe there’s more to come.

Bears-Packers playoff implications: Matchups, predictions – The Athletic - Bears-Packers with playoff implications: Game predictions, key matchups and more

Game Preview: Chicago Bears - Green Bay Packers (Week 17) - Chicago Audible Podcast - Listen as the guys preview the regular-season finale between the Chicago Bears and Green Bay Packers.

Bears vs. Packers: To stop Aaron Rodgers, Robert Quinn must earn his salary - RSN - “When I look at it, I’m still shocked. I still can’t believe I had a season like I’ve had this year,” Quinn said. “But there’s no excuse. The only person I’ve got to blame is myself for that.”

Simms: Bears make playoffs due to Rams, Cardinals game, not Packers game - RSN - Simms' gut tells him the Bears' safety net will come into play.

Chicago Bears Searching for Way to Stop Aaron Rodgers - Sports Illustrated - Different teams have succeeded with different approaches to stopping Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers and the Bears say they simply have to execute whatever approach it is they decide to use.

Mismatches Facing Chicago Bears Against Green Bay Packers - Sports Illustrated - With seven Pro Bowl players, the Green Bay Packers enjoy several lopsided edges in matchups against the Chicago Bears in Sunday's NFC North game at Soldier Field. KEN’S NOTE: This article was published before Bakhtiari was injured.

Chicago Bears to Keep Rams-Cardinals Score Under Wraps - Sports Illustrated - If Chicago Bears coach Matt Nagy has his way, his team on Sunday will not see the Arizona Cardinals-Los Angeles Rams score during their game because it could have an influence on the way they play their game against the Green Bay Packers.

Allen Robinson Held Out of Thursday's Chicago Bears Practice - Sports Illustrated - A hamstring injury caused the Chicago Bears to hold Allen Robinson out of Thursday's practice but defensive end Akiem Hicks was back at practice and went through a full workout after missing Wednesday due to illness.

Bears vs. Packers predictions: Will Chicago secure a playoff spot? - Bears Wire - Can Chicago secure a playoff spot with a win against Green Bay? Our Bears Wire staff shares their predictions for Sunday’s Week 17 game.

Confidence Poll: Bears beat Packers or Cardinals lose to Rams? - Bears Wire - Chicago is one win - or a Cardinals loss - away from clinching a playoff spot. What do you think is the more likely outcome on Sunday?

Bears-Jaguars podcast: Bears are in driver’s seat for the playoffs - Chicago Sun-Times - The Sun-Times’ beat writers make their Week 17 picks and debate whether the Bears will get into the postseason.

Robert Quinn: Sunday ‘a great game to finally make my mark for the city’ - Chicago Sun-Times - Robert Quinn still shakes his head when asked what went wrong this season – how a player the Bears signed to a five-year, $70 million contract can have two sacks in 14 games.

Bears’ defense stoked for revenge vs. Packers - Chicago Sun-Times - Safety Eddie Jackson, still feeling the sting of a 41-25 loss at Lambeau Field in Week 12, said he’ll be “full throttle” Sunday at Soldier Field. “We take heed of the disrespect that’s been thrown, all the shots we’ve been seeing with [the Packers] in the media,’’ he said. ‘‘All the stuff.”

Bears seem to be warming to idea of QB Mitch Trubisky returning in 2021 - Chicago Sun-Times - Trubisky has put himself back in the conversation for next season by playing better in the last month. He can sway things in his favor with a big game Sunday against the Packers.

Injury report: Bears CB Jaylon Johnson still not practicing - Chicago Sun-Times - It seems likely the Bears will face the Packers with the same depleted defensive backfield they used last week.

How Bears will stop scoreboard-watching: take score down - Chicago Sun-Times - Bears coach Matt Nagy said the Bears will “probably” tell the Soldier Field scoreboard operator not to post updates on the Rams-Cardinals game on Sunday.

Chicago Bears: Jeff Joniak's odd 20th year as voice of team - Chicago Tribune - WBBM-AM's Jeff Joniak and Tom Thayer have had to get used to their setup for calling road games this season — from the ninth floor of Two Prudential Plaza in downtown Chicago. Welcome to the show during the COVID-19 pandemic. Adapt and make the best of things.

POLISH SAUSAGE

Florida quarterback Kyle Trask declares for 2021 NFL draft - ProFootballTalk - University of Florida quarterback Kyle Trask isn’t leaving Gainesville like he wanted, but he is leaving.

KNOW THINE ENEMY

Report: Packers lose David Bakhtiari to season-ending knee injury in practice - ProFootballTalk - The Packers have suffered a major blow just before they attempt to clinch home-field advantage throughout the NFC playoffs.

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT ON WINDY CITY GRIDIRON

Curl: Five Questions with Green Bay Packers site Acme Packing Company: What is the final chapter for the NFC North’s Greatest Villain, Aaron Rodgers? - Windy City Gridiron - Jon Meerdink of Acme Packing Company answers Patti’s questions about the Packers and huckleberry pies.

Householder: Chicago Bears Game Preview:Green Bay Packers - Windy City Gridiron - Playoffs or bust; the Bears have to beat their biggest rival to guarantee a spot in the postseason.

THE RULES

Windy City Gridiron Community Guidelines - SBNation.com - We strive to make our communities open and inclusive to sports fans of all backgrounds. The following is not permitted in comments. No personal attacks, politics, gender based insults of any kind, racial insults, etc.

Windy City Gridiron Podcast Channel which includes Bear With Me from Robert Schmitz, Bears Over Beers featuring Jeff Berckes & EJ Snyder, Bears Banter hosted by Bill Zimmerman, and T Formation Conversation from Lester A. Wiltfong Jr.; EJ also co-hosts The Bootleg Football Podcast with Brett Kollmann; R. Schmitz has a film breakdown show on YouTube titled Run Pass Opinion; and Steven’s Streaming Twitch Channel from Steven Schweickert.

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