Life sure is good ... if you're a Packers fan
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The Bears could have had Aaron Rodgers by selecting him with the fourth overall pick in the 2005 draft. Instead, they took Cedric Benson.
The fight won't be fair Monday night when the Bears have Josh McCown at quarterback and the Packers have Aaron Rodgers.
But nobody said life was supposed to be fair, right? If it were, I would be as suave as George Clooney, as wealthy as Bill Gates and at least as tall as Maria Sharapova.
As difficult as it is to do, let's set my inadequacies aside for a moment to consider the relative quarterback histories of the Bears and Packers during the Super Bowl era and even earlier.
Rodgers currently would have the edge on the Bears even if starter Jay Cutler were healthy. Why would anyone expect anything else?
For 38 of the past 58 seasons, Green Bay has had a Hall of Fame-level quarterback and for 58 of 58 of those same seasons the Bears have had none.
Cutler, Erik Kramer and Rudy Bukich aren't exactly Rodgers, Brett Favre and Bart Starr, are they?
Not even Super Bowl XX winner Jim McMahon is.
No wonder that since 1967 the Packers have won four Super Bowls to the Bears' one and since 1961 seven overall NFL championships to the Bears' two.
You think quarterback play might have played a part in those numbers?
I rant about this a lot without considering why the disparity in QBs endured for decades. So now let's take a look at how that period of time unfolded for the Packers and unraveled for the Bears.
In 1956, Green Bay drafted Starr in the 17th round of the NFL draft. Yes, there was a 17th round back then. In the first round that year the Bears drafted — drum roll please — Menan Schriewer.
That isn't a made-up character. The Bears actually picked Menan Schriewer, an end from Texas with a placekicker's name.
The Bears not only passed on the passer Starr, they also didn't take any other quarterback in any of the rounds between 1 and 17. Starr went on to play 196 games for Green Bay and I can find no record of Menan Schriewer suiting up for a single snap in Chicago.
The Packers won five NFL titles in the 1960s with Starr at quarterback, during which time the Bears won one.
In 1992, the Packers traded the rights to the 19th overall pick to Atlanta for a hard-throwing, hard-living kid named Brett Favre.
The Bears' quarterback was Jim Harbaugh, whom they dumped the next year. Favre proceeded to become one of the NFL's all-time greatest quarterbacks. Harbaugh proceeded to become a pretty good coach.
The Bears could have tried to assemble a package of picks to outbid the Packers for Favre, but there is no sign that they did. Instead, they kept No. 22 overall and selected notorious offensive tackle bust Stan Thomas.
Favre won a Super Bowl for the Packers and during his time in Green Bay nobody won one for the Bears.
In 2005, Aaron Rodgers competed against Alex Smith for the honor of being the first pick in the entire draft.
The 49ers took Smith, who took awhile but eventually became a quality NFL quarterback. The Packers selected Rodgers after he fell, fell and fell to No. 24.
The Bears had an opportunity to take Rodgers with the fourth overall pick but opted instead for — yikes! — running back Cedric Benson.
Why did the Bears pass on the man whom today many believe is the league's best quarterback? Blame it on usual suspect Rex Grossman, as in Lovie Smith repeatedly declaring, "Rex is our quarterback."
In the rich tradition of Bears-Packers quarterback play, Rodgers has won a Super Bowl and Grossman hasn't.
The only conclusion from all this is that the Bears figure to close the quarterback gap on the Packers when I begin to remind you of George Clooney.
No, life just isn't fair.
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