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Stuff that matters

The road to the Super Bowl in the NFC goes through Green Bay.

The Packers have clinched home-field advantage throughout the NFC playoffs with a win today in Chicago. The victory gives the Packers a 13-3 record on the season, the best in the conference. They’ll get a first-round playoff bye and then host their first postseason game on either January 16 or January 17.

It was an impressive game from Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers, who may have wrapped up the league’s Most Valuable Player award. Rodgers threw four touchdown passes and no interceptions, and although he threw some passes in the second half that could have been picked, for the most part he was accurate and in control of the offense.

Bears quarterback Mitchell Trubisky did not play as well, although he was accurate while throwing mostly short passes in Matt Nagy’s conservative game plan. Unfortunately, once the Bears fell behind by two scores late in the fourth quarter, Trubisky took a shot downfield that was intercepted. Trubisky didn’t do enough to win, but he was far from the biggest reason the Bears lost. The Bears’ real problem was their defense just didn’t have a game plan for stopping Rodgers.

Fortunately for the Bears, the Rams beat the Cardinals. That means the Bears will make the playoffs as the NFC’s final wild card team, and they’ll be on the road against the Saints in the playoffs next weekend. And if the Bears pull the upset, they’ll be at Green Bay the next week.