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Favre notches 100th career victory

12/10/2001

GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) -- The Green Bay Packers re-established
their supremacy in the NFC Central, but not their old swagger.

After showing the Chicago Bears who's boss in the division with
a 17-7 victory Sunday, the Packers refused to gloat about sweeping
this year's darlings of the NFL.

"What it tells us is head-to-head we beat the Bears twice and
right now they're looking up at us," Santana Dotson said, adding
the victories will mean nothing if the Packers don't play well the
rest of the season.

"If we go up to Tennessee next week and lose, and Chicago wins,
we're right back where we started from."

Ahman Green and Brett Favre, the two stars Sunday, also were
low-key about the victory in the division showdown.

"We're pretty good," Favre said modestly.

What do the Bears need to do on offense to generate some points?
The Bears need to throw the ball down the field. To me, they play not to lose.

The Bears play so conservatively on offense: run the ball, throw short passes, do the dink-and-dunk. That's how they played Sunday. But when they've been at their best offensively, they're throwing deep post routes to Marty Booker.

Against the Packers, Chicago didn't get anything deep -- no big plays. But the Bears aren't good enough or consistent enough on offense to go 10 to 12 plays every drive without making a mistake. And when the Bears get in the red zone, too often they're kicking field goals instead of scoring touchdowns.

ESPN.com's Vinny Cerrato was director of player personnel for the Redskins and 49ers.


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The mantra repeated throughout the locker room was a version of
coach Mike Sherman's postgame message about not getting carried
away, as Green Bay did after beating the Bears a month ago only to
lose to Atlanta at home the following week.

"We didn't win the championship today," Sherman said.
"Playing for the division lead, it was monumental that way. But we
didn't win anything today, that's for sure. We still have a ways to
go."

Green ran for 125 yards and a touchdown and Favre got career
victory No. 100 as the Bears lost on the road for the first time
since Baltimore beat them in the season opener.

The Packers expected more blitzes and long passes out of the
Bears, who were conservative on both sides of the ball in Green
Bay's 20-12 victory at Soldier Field last month.

They tried to pressure Favre and they attempted to go deep
downfield a few times, but they mostly used a conservative passing
game.

"They did go vertical. They just didn't make the plays because,
I believe, we had pretty good coverage," Sherman said.

Several Bears defensive players hollered for coach Dick Jauron
and offensive coordinator John Shoop to open things up just before
halftime.

"These are competitive people, coaches and players, everybody
wants to win," Jauron said.

Linebacker Rosevelt Colvin said the players should have kept
quiet.

"Our job is to play defense. Anything that was said was just
frustration," he said. "We were getting whipped on defense,
too."

Jim Miller, who completed 18 of 33 passes for 139 yards with no
TDs and one interception, suggested that shifting philosophies
might not have been the best approach.

"There was a lot of frustration," he said. "We tried to do a
lot of things different offensively. We weren't on the same page
sometimes."

Green broke a 7-7 tie late in the third quarter with a 12-yard
touchdown run that capped a 91-yard drive. He became the first
running back to top 100 yards against the Bears since Robert Smith
did it for Minnesota on Oct. 15, 2000, a span of 20 games.

Green rushed 29 times and also had 49 yards on two receptions
from Favre, who improved to 100-53 as a starter, including 16-4
against Chicago.

Favre finished 15-of-27 for 207 yards, with one touchdown pass
and an interception. He surpassed 3,000 yards passing for the 10th
straight season, breaking the NFL mark he shared with Dan Marino.

Two plays after Green's TD run, Darren Sharper intercepted a
pass from Jim Miller at midfield, and struggling kicker Ryan
Longwell was good from 27 yards for a 17-7 lead with 12:40
remaining.

Sharper stepped in front of Marty Booker with 2:30 left to break
up a fourth-down pass, ending the Bears' hopes for a last-second
comeback -- something they've done several times this season.

Anthony Thomas scored on a 19-yard run to tie the game at 7 on
the first drive of the second half.

Chicago's Paul Edinger shanked a 23-yarder on the final play of
the first half, wasting Brian Urlacher's interception with 32
seconds left.

Green Bay's leading tackler, linebacker Nate Wayne, joined
Gilbert Brown (toe) and John Thierry (knee) on the sideline with
bruised ribs in the first quarter. And offensive lineman Marco
Rivera, playing with a broken left hand, was replaced by Earl
Dotson in the second quarter.

Game notes
Favre hit Antonio Freeman with a 3-yard TD pass on the
opening series for the duo's 57th career connection, fifth best in
NFL history. ... Green became the first Packers running back to top
1,000 yards in consecutive seasons since John Brockington in
1971-73. ... Thomas, playing for the first time since pulling a
hamstring three weeks ago, gained 54 yards on 15 carries.