The year is 1989. It’s week 9. The Green Bay Packers are a surprising 4-4 and are hosting the 5-3 Chicago Bears, a team they have not beaten in five years.
What would ensue in the 60 minutes of football on that Sunday would be the prelude to a shift to come in the two franchises’ fortunes just a few years later. The Packers won this game, but not without controversy — one that would put an asterisk in the Bears’ media guide for years to come.
Yes, this was the “Instant Replay” game, a 14-13 Packers victory that cemented the team’s “Cardiac Pack” legacy and helped quarterback Don Majkowski springboard his season from impressive to downright legendary. For the Packers, names like Tim Harris, Brent Fullwood, and Clint Didier made big plays. The Bears had future NFL head coach Ron Rivera and longtime fullback Brad Muster show up big, while Jim Harbaugh was making just his third NFL start and his first in the 1989 season.
This week, Evan “Tex” Western of Acme Packing Company joined Larry Dyer on the Bears Talk Underground podcast to look back at this game, which is available on Youtube in condensed form. The two look back to remember the history of these two teams in the 1980s, the impact that this game would have on the franchises in the weeks and years to come, and the incredible replay reversal on a rule that is very different today than it was 33 years ago.