Would somebody tell Justin Jones that the Bears finished 3-14 last season? Thank you.

The defensive tackle, who has played one season in Chicago, somehow thought it was a good idea to criticize Packers fans.

SHARE Would somebody tell Justin Jones that the Bears finished 3-14 last season? Thank you.
Bears defensive end Justin Jones reacting to a missed field-goal attempt against the Commanders last season.

Bears defensive tackle Justin Jones let fly with some abuse of Packers fans recently.

Michael Reaves/Getty Images

I don’t know if the people who live and breathe Packers football are ‘‘[crappy]’’ fans, as Bears defensive lineman Justin Jones says they are. But they do know what winning looks like. Bears fans, on the other hand, have two options if they want to get in touch with on-field success:

1. Pick another team to follow on Sundays.

2. Say what they always say when there’s a pause in a conversation: ‘‘How about those ’85 Bears!’’

If Jones’ intent was to make sure everyone in greater Chicago took shrapnel for his thoughts about Packers fans, then he nailed it. Bears fans were minding their own business Tuesday, Googling ‘‘Waukegan’’ to learn about things to do on game day in Canada, when Packers fans started lobbing retaliatory abuse their way. Jones had described the Packer faithful at Lambeau Field as ‘‘freaking obnoxious’’ for yelling things at Bears players that had nothing to do with football.

‘‘We’re not even running a play, and you guys are talking about, ‘Boo,’ ’’ he said at Bears minicamp at Halas Hall. ‘‘What are we talking about there? Y’all are — half of ’em don’t even know football. It’s so weird to me.’’

It was at this point that even the comatose among us remembered the Bears went 3-14 last season. The bleeding from that experience hadn’t even stopped, yet here was Jones, lashing out at Packers fans. Apparently, the Bears’ minicamp is so intoxicating that it makes players speak in tongues no one can begin to understand. Jones’ comments were bombastic enough that ESPN, the aggregator of bombast, made them one of its featured stories Tuesday.

The most logical question in all of this is, ‘‘Who the hell is Justin Jones?’’ It’s not just Packers fans asking that; it’s Bears fans, too. For the uninitiated: Jones is a former third-round pick of the Chargers who came to the Bears last year after four seasons in L.A. His three sacks in 2023 gave him 7½ for his career. He might have been the best player on the Bears’ defensive line last season, but the team used second- and third-round picks in the draft in April on interior linemen. That should tell you something.

Jones waded into the mess he made while bemoaning Aaron Rodgers’ move from the Packers to the Jets this offseason. He said he had wanted to beat the Pack and Rodgers on the road in 2023. I couldn’t shake the feeling that perhaps Jones was emboldened to rip Packers fans exactly because Rodgers isn’t there anymore. It’s a lot easier to poke the bear when the quarterback is Jordan Love, his replacement.

In 2021, Rodgers famously and loudly told Bears fans at Soldier Field that he owned them after scoring a late touchdown in a victory. That’s how it’s done. He said he screamed what he screamed in response to a woman in the stands who had offered him the middle fingers on both of her hands. Perhaps she was pantomiming goalposts. Whatever it was, it wasn’t a good look for Bears fans.

Trash-talking is best offered from a position of power. The basis of Jones’ trash-talking of Packers fans? His unpleasant experience during a 27-10 loss last season at Lambeau. Not exactly the surest foothold when winding up to let some abuse fly.

If I had to guess, I’d say Jones is feeling empowered because the climate around Halas Hall tells him he should feel that way. So many people have so bought into Justin Fields that they wouldn’t have change for a dollar if you asked. Fields has mastered the running part of ‘‘running quarterback,’’ but he hasn’t nailed down the ‘‘quarterback’’ part yet. I know: Nobody wants to hear it. Everybody wants to hear about how much he has improved and about the connection he has made with new receiver DJ Moore in world-record time.

So it makes some sense that a relatively unknown player, one who has spent all of one season with the Bears, would believe that mid-June is the perfect time to criticize Packers fans. Never mind that those same Packers fans have watched their team win 26 of its last 31 games against the Bears, including 13 of the last 14 meetings.

Those numbers make Jones’ thoughts even more ridiculous, but not so ridiculous that Packers coaches and players will ignore them when the teams meet in the season opener Sept. 10 at Soldier Field. Will it motivate the visitors from the north? It might. The Packers might be bored after playing with their food for so many years.

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