GREEN BAY, Wis. — A simple, seemingly innocuous question to Aaron Rodgers led to hilarity in the Packers’ locker room Wednesday: Who is your all-time favorite Bear?
Rodgers readily picked Hall of Fame linebacker Brian Urlacher, then rolled into a story about his hijinks in a 2009 game at Lambeau Field. Every time Rodgers called a change at the line of scrimmage, Urlacher countered with one for the defense.
But Urlacher’s calls didn’t sound like football plays.
“The checks he was saying were super-inappropriate,” Rodgers said. “I think it was [before] the miking up of the guards, where every single word is heard, because I promise you if that happened today, some of that stuff would’ve had to get bleeped out.
“One of the first times we played golf in [Lake] Tahoe, we joked about some of those checks. I can still remember some of the crazy stuff he was saying. I just always wondered, ‘Was any of that stuff real or were you just [messing] around?’ We had some good laughs.”
So which was it?
“He said a lot of it was real,” Rodgers said. “They would come up with them specifically for Packers week because . . . he said he had a beat on when we were checking. And they would come up with specific dirty checks to combat anything we were trying to do.”
The calls were so vulgar that Rodgers couldn’t even give a watered-down example.
If Urlacher did decode Rodgers’ checks, it wasn’t enough. The Bears held him to 184 yards and a touchdown, but the Packers won 21-15.
Aside from the laughs, Rodgers had tremendous appreciation for his adversary.
“I just have a ton of respect for him,” he said. “I’ve gotten to know him off the field, and I like him a lot more now that he’s not sacking me or picking me off. . . . I did tackle him one time, though. It wasn’t much of a tackle, but he fell.
“But I have a ton of respect for his game and what he accomplished in the league and just the chess match of check [vs.] recheck.”