The Bears celebrate after scoring a touchdown.

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Shepkowski: Time For Bears To End Packers

After years of being the little brother, the Bears have the chance to punch back.

Nick Shepkowski
December 14, 2018 - 11:34 am
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(670 The Score) Did you grow up with an older sibling who was a great student, solid athlete and an all-around good kid? If so, did teachers and/or coaches constantly remind you of how great your sibling was when you were in high school?

I can’t help but think that same feeling is what the Bears are collectively experiencing as they prepare for a potential NFC North-clinching game Sunday.

The Packers are that older sibling who has won with regularity. You're constantly reminded just how great they have been.

It sounds like the Bears are tired of hearing that narrative. On Tuesday, Bears defensive lineman Akiem Hicks was quick to remind everyone in Chicago about Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers' comments after Green Bay lost to Minnesota in late November. In the aftermath, Rodgers expressed confidence that 

"Nobody forgot Aaron's little comments after they lost that big game (against the Vikings on Nov. 25) where he said, 'All we got to do is win out and go to Soldier Field and win like we've done a bunch in the past,'" Hicks told the Mully & Haugh Show. "I'm real excited for Aaron to come down here and play this game."

Hicks wasn't done. On Thursday afternoon, he posted a series of pictures to his Instagram account in which he was tackling none other than Rodgers himself.

Beyond that, usually soft-spoken and say-almost-nothing-noteworthy Bears quarterback Mitchell Trubisky was visibly annoyed Wednesday when asked about his old Packers/Brett Favre themed-nickname:

"I’m done with that nickname," Trubisky said. "No one calls me that anymore. I’m just focused on playing this week and doing my job."

When asked about what he might admire about Rodgers, Trubisky was unmoved.

"I don't know, I haven't really watched much on him this year," Trubisky said.

"Obviously, he's had a lot of success, but I'm just focused on what I got to do for my team this year right now."

Trubisky's tone and body language spoke volumes to the annoyance he seemed to have with being asked the questions.

Maybe I’m reading into all of this too much, but I’m not bothered by anything said by members of the Bears this week. Instead, it's a big sign of the culture change that we've seen at Halas Hall this season.

Remember the pregame speech that Herb Brooks delivered in "Miracle"?

"I’m sick and tired of hearing about what a great hockey team the Soviets have," he said. "Screw 'em!" 

What the Packers have done over the last 25 years is ridiculous. That’s what happens when you have a Hall of Fame quarterback and replace him with another and, for the most part, regularly hire competent coaches.

But the Bears are understandably sick of hearing about all the accolades for a team that’s two games under .500 and has to win out to even have a chance at a playoff spot. The NFC North is theirs for the taking, and I can't blame them for being sick of hearing about this Packers praise and/or suggestion that they should have fear of Green Bay.

Bears rookie receiver Anthony Miller, who has been in the league for all of five minutes, didn’t mince words earlier this week either.

"We hate the Packers," Miller said.

It's safe to say it didn't take long for him to buy into this new culture.

Again, what the Packers have done in my lifetime is the standard bearer in the NFC North. But they’re not a good football team this season, and Rodgers torching bad Bears teams over the past decade means nothing when evaluating this week’s game.  

Like Mikey from "The Goonies" said, "Down here it’s our time, it’s our time down here!"

I can’t help but think that’s what all of Halas Hall is thinking this week and that a division-clinching win over the Packers would send a new message about where the NFC North goes through for years to come.

Nick Shepkowski is the executive producer of the McNeil & Parkins Show on 670 the Score in afternoon drive. Follow him on Twitter @Shep670.​