NFC North recap: Rodgers ‘still owns’ the Bears, Vikings trending up

Pride of Detroit

With six weeks of NFL football in the books, let’s take a look at how things are shaping up in the NFC North division.

Packers take care of the Bears on the road, win 24-14

Packers

While us Detroit Lions fans were watching the atrocity that was the Lions-Bengals game, Aaron Rodgers was making it known that he still owns the Bears.

I would admire this kind of heel move from anyone other than Rodgers. After yelling this to the crowd, Rodgers did his patented championship belt gesture. What a dork.

He didn’t have to do much, but Rodgers did account for all three of Green Bay’s touchdowns (two passing and one rushing). The ground game was established, as the Packers finished with 5.0 yards per carry and 154 rushing yards, and Rodgers needed only 23 passing attempts and under 200 passing yards to seal the deal.

Hate ‘em all you want, but the Packers are on a tear after the embarrassing Week 1 loss they suffered. This win marks five in a row now, and that lead might only increase from here considering how rough the rest of the division is looking.

Next game: vs. Washington (2-4)

Bears

Trending downward are the Bears, who appear to be one of the biggest frauds at 3-3. Despite being .500, they have a point differential of -26, and only two teams in the NFL have scored fewer points than the Bears. However, their stout defense has been keeping them in games.

One positive takeaway for the Bears, however, is that sixth-round pick and rookie running back Khalil Herbert has looked fantastic out of the backfield while David Montgomery has been on IR. Herbert ran for 97 yards and a touchdown on 19 carries (5.1 ypc) against the Packers, following up on last week’s solid performance.

Justin Fields turned in a mediocre performance and still occasionally will go through some growing pains as a rookie, but he did look good when taking off and running with the ball (six carries, 43 rushing yards).

Next game: @ Bucs (5-1)

Vikings win in overtime over the Panthers, 34-28

Of course just one week removed from a game-winning field goal over the Lions, the Vikings are put in a similar situation against the Panthers and their kicker manages to blow it this time as regulation time expired. Of… course.

The Panthers have been quite the surprise this year and started off 3-0 in their first three games, but this marks their third loss in a row now. Life comes at you fast.

This was a back-and-forth battle that saw seven lead changes and gave us some overtime football that was short-lived. The Vikings marched down field and scored the game-winning touchdown on the first drive.

The stars of the game for Minnesota were the usual suspects. Kirk Cousins had a very solid statline (373 passing yards, three touchdowns and zero interceptions), while Dalvin Cook rushed for 140 yards (4.8 YPC) and a touchdown. Adam Thielen led the team with 126 receiving yards and a touchdown, Justin Jefferson got involved with 80 receiving yards, and K.J. Osborn was right behind with 78 receiving yards and the game-winning TD grab.

The Vikings have avoided defeat by the skin of their teeth the past two weeks, but currently sit at .500 after starting 1-3 on the season.

Next game: vs. Cowboys (5-1)

NFC North Standings after Week 6

1. Green Bay Packers (5-1)
t-2. Minnesota Vikings (3-3)
t-2. Chicago Bears (3-3)
4. Detroit Lions (0-6)

The division is becoming a battle between two teams in the middle who are sandwiched between one team that will likely run away with the division title, and the other fighting for the No. 1 overall pick in the 2022 NFL Draft.

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