Packers vs. Bears score: Aaron Rodgers owns Chicago again, Green Bay sweeps season series with big win

The Bears did their best to make Aaron Rodgers eat his words from earlier in the 2021 season, surprising early in Sunday night's prime-time rematch with a couple of big plays from Jakeem Grant, not to mention a halftime lead after a resilient back-and-forth. In the end, however, Rodgers and the Packers owned their rivals yet again. As Justin Fields and Co. cooled off, Matt LaFleur's unit heated up, rolling to well over 400 yards and nearly 30 first downs with the ball in their hands. Rodgers finished with four touchdowns through the air, looking smooth as ever to win 45-30, sweep the series and stay unbeaten at Lambeau this season.

Here are some immediate takeaways from Sunday night's Packers victory:

Why the Packers won

After a slow start in which they punted on consecutive series, they basically moved the ball at will. And that takes a toll on a team like the Bears, who was inferior to begin with. Rodgers looked as comfortable as he has all year once he settled in, routinely floating completions to open targets off his back foot -- most notably Allen Lazard, who made a few tough and timely catches; and Davante Adams, who was his prototypical machine-like self (10-121-1) all night. AJ Dillon did enough as the lead back alongside a recovering Aaron Jones. As for the defense and special teams? Both units faltered, surrendering big plays in a hurry and practically begging Chicago to stay in it at the end. The "D" never quite solved Fields as a runner. But the Bears' rookie QB rarely dented them through the air down the stretch, and Rasul Douglas once again stepped up for a momentum-shifting pick-six.

Why the Bears lost

They were too dependent on the big play. That's not to say they don't deserve credit for putting up a fight in prime time. Fields gave it his all and did a lot himself, extending and making plays with his legs. Grant also stole the show in the first 30 minutes with a pair of highlight-reel scores. Robert Quinn even logged a pair of sacks on Rodgers. But they had no rhythm outside of those semi-fluky explosions early on. With seven penalties, including on a crucial would-be fumble recovery; another injury to left tackle Jason Peters; a bad performance on third downs; some oddly conservative calls from Matt Nagy; and another quiet night for their wideouts, they just couldn't keep up. Defensively, their secondary had no chance once the Packers turned on the juice coming out of the break.

Turning point

The Bears showed a ton of fight before halftime, taking a lead on Damiere Byrd's catch-and-run explosion and then going up 10 on Grant's punt-return score. But things got ugly in a hurry in the second half. Having allowed Green Bay to score quickly before the break, the Bears led by just three on their first possession of the third. A field goal extended that lead to six, but after the Packers responded with yet another rapid scoring series, Fields coughed up the ball on a sack by Preston Smith. That turnover allowed Green Bay to punch it in on the very next play and keep the lead for good.

Play of the game

Give it to Grant, whose team didn't finish on top but at least got to witness some Devin Hester-esque magic on special teams. This 97-yard return showcased his electrifying ability:

What's next

The Packers (10-3), who are successfully keeping pace with the Cardinals and Buccaneers atop the NFC, will hit the road in Week 15 to visit the Ravens (8-5), who fell to the Browns on Sunday and also saw quarterback Lamar Jackson exit early with an injury. The Bears (4-9), meanwhile, have now lost six of their last eight and will host the rival Vikings (6-7) on "Monday Night Football."

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December 13, 2021, 4:42 AM

The Bears fall to 4-9. I'd say they can start looking at mock drafts but they traded their first-round pick for Justin Fields, which seems worth it. 

December 13, 2021, 4:37 AM

Chandon Sullivan gets the tipped interception to seal the game. Packers will improve to 10-3 and remain just behind the Cardinals in the race for the No. 1 seed, unless Arizona loses to the Rams tomorrow night. 

December 13, 2021, 4:37 AM

Matt Nagy might kick the surprise field goal here, you never know.

December 13, 2021, 4:36 AM

Oh boy Fields hit Rashan Gary with the okey-doke on that scramble. Got Gary up in the air so he could escape to the outside and deliver that throw to Damiere Byrd.

December 13, 2021, 4:33 AM

Another play where you can't advance the kick! Two in one game.

December 13, 2021, 4:31 AM

Justin Fields got walloped right there. Seems like he's okay, thankfully.

December 13, 2021, 4:26 AM

That'll pretty much do it, folks. Were it not for the big plays by Jakeem Grant, this game would have been extremely boring.

December 13, 2021, 4:18 AM
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