The Green Bay Packers and the Chicago Bears have played a lot of football games against each other. 191 in fact, but Thursday night’s game will be their first ever meeting on Thanksgiving.
Speaking of history, if the Packers want to continue the recent history of success that they have had against Chicago (9-1 in last 10 games) they will continue another trend of Green Bay-Chicago games — the tormenting of Bears’ quarterback Jay Cutler.
In all, the Packers have played Jay Cutler 12 times over the course of his career. Once when he was the starter for the Broncos in 2007 and 11 times since Chicago traded for him in 2009. And in 11 of those 12 games, the Packers have intercepted Cutler an incredible 22 times and at least once in 11 of the 12 contests.
The only game in which the Packers didn’t intercept Cutler was when he played in Denver. So that means every game against Green Bay and every time he has played against a Dom Capers coordinated defense — he has tossed at least one pick. And in seven of his 11 games against the Packers defense, he has thrown at least two interceptions seven times and four interceptions on two separate occasions.
If you think those numbers are bad — they get even worse. Cutler has started four games at Lambeau Field since 2009 and in those four games he has thrown 12 interceptions. Twice he threw four and twice he threw two. He has also thrown just four touchdowns, averaged 210 yards passing per game, and posted an average passer rating of a dismal 45.9.
So while the focus of many Packer fans may be the continued improvement of the offense, and in particular the passing game, the real key to victory over the Bears on Turkey Day is simply doing what Green Bay has always done to the Cutler-led Bears — pressure and pick off the quarterback.
History shows just how much the Packers defense has dominated Cutler and his 1-11 record against them is further proof of his inadequacy. But every dog has his day, it’s simply up to the Green Bay defense to make sure Cutler’s doesn’t come Thanksgiving night.