On Tuesday we were 75 days away from Green Bay Packers football in the 2022 season, and as a result, this 75-yard Randall Cobb touchdown started making the rounds.
75 days until Packers football! Here’s 75 yards and a dagger from the Bear Killer himself, Randall Cobb pic.twitter.com/UavJtNadXl— sam. (@sammwichh) June 28, 2022
It’s one of those great feel-good plays that’s just fun to watch over and over, and another in the long history of Randall Cobb owning the Bears. Cobb has at least two of the defining Bear-crushing moments of the last decade and he seems like a good candidate to be the biggest Packer “Bear killer” of them all, but that’s really not the case. Cobb has been very good against the Bears while serving in Green Bay, amassing 885 yards on 64 receptions with a lofty 9 touchdowns, but it’s hard to say he’s been the absolute best as plenty of other Packers have been better in the major receiving categories.
Sterling Sharpe has the most yards against Chicago (1,134 on 78 catches in just 14 games). Billy Howton and Davante Adams are tied for the most TDs with 10, just edging out Cobb. Donald Driver has the most receptions against the Bears, with 89, though he had the benefit of playing 25 games. Sterling’s 5.6 receptions per game was the highest on a per-game basis, just beating out Davante Adams’ 5.1. Billy Howton (who played from 1952-1958) averaged 21.5 yards per reception, a stat where the older timers dominate as Lofton (17.3 and Max McGee (17.2) come in at 2nd and 3rd.
Even as an “overall receiver” Cobb has stiff competition from Davante Adams and Jordy Nelson, who are right there with him in every major statistical category. Here’s the entire chart and you can decide for yourself.
The big takeaway though, is that TONS of Packer receivers are dominant Bear killers. This got me to thinking about whether there are any Bears receivers that have been huge Packer killers? The answer is no.
And it’s a hilarious “no.” A simple “no” is completely insufficient to describe just how non-dominant Bear receivers have been against Green Bay. Before we get into the high comedy, let’s find some additional context. The Packers have 5 receivers in their history who have had over 1,000 yards against Chicago (Sharpe, Lofton, Nelson, Driver, and Adams). Antonio Freeman and Billy Howton had over 900. Cobb and Jennings had over 800. Dowler and McGee had over 700. And Robert Brooks is next on the list with 686, the 12th most of any Packer.
On the flip side, the Chicago Bear with the most receiving yards against the Packers is Curtis Conway, who had one more yard than Brooks with 687, from 1993 to 1999. The Chicago Bear with the second most receiving yards against the Packers is also the Chicago Bear with the most receptions against the Packers: Matt Forte, with 71 catches for 653 yards. Yes, a running back is the all-time Bear leader in catches against the Packers, and Forte and Conway are the only two Bears with over 600 yards against the Packers.
It gets worse, because there’s not a current threat to unseat anyone in the top 10 at the moment. The Bears with the 3rd and 4th most receiving yards against Green Bay are teammates Dick Gordon, who played from 1965 – 1971 and had 581 yards on just 29 catches, and Mike Ditka, who had 554 yards on 40 catches. Ditka just beats out Alshon Jeffrey (539 yards on 40 catches) and Allen Robinson (510 yards on 37 catches).
Seriously, look at this list! Darnell Mooney is the current highest Bear with 191 yards, which puts him in 32nd place, just behind Brad Muster. But it gets even funnier if we focus on receptions instead of yards. We already mentioned Matt Forte, but of the top 5, only Conway is a wide receiver. Walter Payton is 2nd to Forte’s 71 receptions with 54. Then it’s Conway’s 47, followed by fullback Matt Suey’s 41! Matt Suey! Can you imagine if the Packers’ 4th leading receiver against the Bears all time was John Kuhn or William Henderson?
The other NFC North teams are much more normal. The Lions can boast Megatron, who had over 1,400 yards against the Packers, in addition to the great Herman Moore, and quality secondary receivers Johnnie Morton, Brett Perriman, and Golden Tate. They have 5 receivers who have posted at least 700 yards against Green Bay.
The Vikings obviously have a plethora of impressive options led by Randy Moss and Cris Carter, but also including Adam Thielen (986 yards), Jake Reed (968 yards), Ahmad Rashad (815 yards), Steve Jordan (808 yards), and Sammy White (732). Anthony Carter and Kyle Rudolph also have respectable totals, and Stefon Diggs only misses the list by virtue of being traded. For Justin Jefferson it’s only a matter of time. The Vikings have 7 players with over 700 yards against Green Bay, with more to come.
The Bears are an anomaly of anomalies. The only offensive category they seem to lead the league in is “offensive categories where we are hilariously bad.” It’s not as if the Bears have never had any good receivers, as Brandon Marshall, Muhsin Muhammad, and Allen Robinson have run through town, but they never seem to stay very long, the quarterbacks don’t help, and they just don’t seem to do much against Green Bay.