Looking to topple the three-time defending NFC North champions Sunday, the Bears traded punches with the rival Packers for nearly a half before getting knocked to the canvas.
After Jay Cutler's 8-yard touchdown pass to Alshon Jeffery gave the Bears a 17-14 lead with 3:50 left in the first half, the Packers rolled up 24 unanswered points en route to a decisive 38-17 victory, their fifth straight over the Bears at Soldier Field.
"I certainly want to credit [coach] Mike McCarthy and the Green Bay Packers for the game that they played today," said coach Marc Trestman. "They played a heck of a football game.
Week 4: Bears vs. Packers
"This was certainly a disappointing loss for us and the guys in our locker room. It was a home game and a divisional opponent, and we certainly didn't do enough to get it done. The big thing will be to bounce back and get back to work tomorrow, and we intend to do that."
As usual, the Bears (2-2) had no answer for Aaron Rodgers. The Packers star quarterback completed 22 of 28 passes for 302 yards with four touchdowns, no interceptions and a 151.2 passer rating.
Rodgers has now won seven straight games he's started and finished against the Bears, throwing 19 touchdown passes and five interceptions in those contests. His 151.2 passer rating Sunday was the highest of his career in 14 starts versus the Bears and his second best overall.
The Packers (2-2) produced five touchdowns and one field goal on their first six possessions Sunday. The only Green Bay drive that didn't result in points came when Mason Crosby's 38-yard field goal attempt was deflected by Willie Young with 4:47 remaining in the fourth quarter.
"We felt it was a game that we had to score touchdowns, and we did, but we didn't score enough," Trestman said.
The Bears finally rediscovered their running game, outrushing the Packers 235-56 with Kyle Long gaining 122 yards on 23 carries.
Cutler performed well in the first half, completing 15 of 21 passes for 173 yards with two touchdowns, no interceptions and a 127.7 passer rating. But he was intercepted on the Bears' first two possessions of the second half, and the Packers converted both turnovers into touchdowns.
"I thought we were playing well," Cutler said. "We were moving the ball well. We were running the ball well. We were changing it up. I thought 'Tress' [Trestman] called a really good game. We just had some unfortunate things happen to us that kind of derailed us and they didn't."
Trailing 24-17, the Bears advanced to the Green Bay 24 early in the third quarter before Tramon Williams jumped a slant pass intended for Josh Morgan, deflecting the ball to Clay Matthews, who returned the interception 40 yards to the Chicago 35.
On the Bears' next possession, a miscommunication between Cutler and Brandon Marshall led to an interception by Sam Shields, who returned it 52 yards to the Chicago 11. Cutler threw an intermediate pass over the middle, but Marshall had taken off deep.
"Brandon was supposed to run a hook route deep at 18 yards and he turned it into a go route," Trestman said.
After Cutler's second interception, the Packers scored on their eighth straight possession against the Bears, dating back to their final two drives of last year's season finale.
The Bears moved the ball all day, compiling 496 total yards. They scored touchdowns on two of four first-half possessions on Cutler TD passes to Marshall and Jeffery. But they mustered only three points after reaching the 1-yard line on each of their other two first-half drives.
After a Packers penalty gave the Bears first-and-goal from the 1, Kyle Long was flagged for a false start and Cutler eventually threw slightly too high for Jeffery on third-and-goal from the 5. Robbie Gould followed with a 23-yard field goal that gave the Bears a brief 10-7 lead.
With :09 left in the first half and the Bears out of timeouts, Cutler rifled a pass on second-and-goal from the 9 over the middle to Martellus Bennett, who was stopped inches short of the goal line as time expired. The Bears failed to advance inside the Packers' 20 the rest of the game.