Green Bay quarterback Aaron Rodgers probably doesn't empathize with the Chicago Bears often, but he understands how costly it can be to lose a player like Brian Urlacher. Urlacher had been with the Bears for 13 seasons but won't be returning after he was unable to reach a deal with the team.
"It's kind of like us with losing [Charles] Woodson. It's tough to lose a guy of that leadership ability," Rodgers told the Chicago Tribune. "Playmaking aside, I think both guys can still play at a high level. They are guys who bring more than just their on-field ability. They bring so much more to a locker room and a defense."
Rodgers then talked about what a 13-year veteran like Urlacher brings to a team.
"That veteran presence, that leadership, that track record they have, the experience," Rodgers said. "When they get up in a meeting and talk, everybody is quiet. They're definitely going to miss his presence and his ability and his leadership."
Since Rodgers took over as the Packers starting quarterback in 2008, he's faced Urlacher nine times, going 6-2 in regular-season meetings and 1-0 in the playoffs.
"I always appreciated the approach that he takes to the game. Against the Bears, you never had to worry about cheap shots around the pile or after the whistle. They played the right way and it was led by Brian," Rodgers said. "I'll never forget some of the battles we had. I always appreciated his ability to enjoy the game while being competitive. He plays the game with a lot of class and professionalism. He does it the right way."
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