After every Chicago Bears football game, 670 AM "The Score," a Chicago sports talk station, airs a show breaking down the game and taking calls. The signal is crystal clear in Madison, and you can practically hear the spit hitting the microphone, particularly after the Bears lose to the Green Bay Packers, which has happened six straight times.
"Lemme tell ya somethin' right now" was the preface of choice for not just the hosts but the callers last Sunday, enunciated in that unmistakable Windy City staccato. What often followed was a stream-of-consciousness diatribe that eventually ran out of gas, ending with something like "I just donno know what ta say." There can't be many better ways for Packers fans to bathe in schadenfreude after a big win than by listening to The Score.
But flipping the dial over to the postgame show on the Packers Radio Network didn't reveal much of a contrast. Callers were despondent about kicker Mason Crosby, who has missed 12 field goal tries this year. They moaned about left tackle Marshall Newhouse giving up a sack, and they groaned about running back Ryan Grant's fumble. At one point, the host had to remind listeners that the win had clinched the NFC North title for Green Bay in a year when several key players have missed games with injuries.
Fans were spoiled by the Packers' 15-1 record in 2011, when they averaged 35 points a game and seemed unstoppable. Of course, the New York Giants proved how inaccurate that sentiment was in the playoffs. Fans should listen to Aaron Rodgers, the best quarterback in the NFL, and appreciate the hard-fought success their team has achieved.
"I think this team is playing the right way right now," said Rodgers after Sunday's game. "We want to be peaking at the right time because those are the teams that make deep runs."