Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers reacts after a touchdown Sunday. | Jeff Haynes/AP photo

Aaron Rodgers hasn’t thrown a pick in 368 passes, but the Bears are ready

SHARE Aaron Rodgers hasn’t thrown a pick in 368 passes, but the Bears are ready
SHARE Aaron Rodgers hasn’t thrown a pick in 368 passes, but the Bears are ready

Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers took a shotgun snap, faked a handoff and looked for tight end Jimmy Graham over the middle.

With his lightning-quick motion, Rodgers threw the ball — but it was tipped by leaping Bills linebacker Tremaine Edmunds.

The ball, now wobbling, continued toward Graham. He reached for it with his left hand and tipped it into the arms of Bills safety Jordan Poyer for an interception.

The date was Sept. 30. Rodgers hasn’t thrown a pick since.

On Sunday, he blew past Patriots quarterback Tom Brady’s NFL-record 358 consecutive passes without an interception. He finished the Packers’ victory against the Falcons with 368 and counting.

Rodgers’ record will face its biggest challenge of the season Sunday at Soldier Field. Takeaways — a league-best 34 of them — are the lifeblood of the Bears’ dominant defense, which has 25 interceptions. Only one other team in the NFL has more than 15.

‘‘[Rodgers] protects the football,’’ Bears coach Matt Nagy said. ‘‘And he has extreme confidence in how he does it. And he’s been doing it for a long time. So the No. 1 thing we have to do is try to break that.’’

Rodgers’ streak is the result of accuracy, intelligence and experience.

‘‘He’s very calculated in his throws,’’ cornerback Prince Amukamara said. ‘‘And he’s great at extending plays; he’s great at getting rid of the ball and throwing it out of bounds. That’s something he takes pride in — not turning over the ball.

‘‘I don’t think he’s going to go crazy trying to turn it over in this game, but that’s our job: to make the pocket uncomfortable for him. And when we know that a route is coming, we make a play on it.’’

Before throwing the interception to Poyer, Rodgers had thrown 150 passes in a row without a pick. His accuracy is no surprise to Bears defenders.


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‘‘They’re aware of that,’’ defensive coordinator Vic Fangio said. ‘‘But he’s done that every year.’’

Since throwing an uncharacteristic 11 interceptions in 15 games in 2010, Rodgers hasn’t thrown more than eight in a season. He threw a combined 46 interceptions in 2011-17; Jay Cutler, by comparison, threw 81 during the same span.

‘‘He’s a great quarterback,’’ Amukamara said. ‘‘You don’t even want to call him conservative. He takes calculated chances, and he’s very precise. And the receivers help him out in not throwing picks, also.

‘‘We’re gonna have to do a good job and continue to do a good job of getting the ball somehow.’’

Rodgers is 17-4 in his career against the Bears, with one loss coming when he got knocked out of the game with a broken collarbone in 2013. In those games, he has thrown 45 touchdown passes and only 11 interceptions. Rodgers’ 105.9 passer rating against the Bears is the best of any quarterback with 200 or more passes against them.

‘‘Decision-making and accuracy,’’ said cornerback Kyle Fuller, who is tied for the league lead with seven interceptions. ‘‘You have those elite quarterbacks, and he’s one of them.’’

Rodgers’ 103.4 career passer rating is the best in NFL history. Only one other quarterback, Russell Wilson, is above 100.

‘‘That’s a big reason why: He’s never thrown a lot of picks,’’ Fangio said.

The Bears, meanwhile, have had at least two interceptions in eight of their 13 games and at least three in four games. They logged four Sunday against the Rams, their most in a game since 2012.

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‘‘It’ll be a big-time challenge for us,’’ Nagy said. ‘‘But I think our guys will be up for it coming off of the way they just played against the Rams. Their confidence will be high.’’

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