Bears Coach Matt Nagy Talks NFC North-Clinching Win

Josh Liss
December 17, 2018 - 8:26 am

Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports

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CHICAGO (WBBM NEWSRADIO) -- Mitchell Trubisky threw for two touchdowns, Eddie Jackson ended Aaron Rodgers' NFL-record streak without an interception and the Chicago Bears clinched the NFC North with a 24-17 victory over the Green Bay Packers on Sunday.

The Bears (10-4) secured their first playoff appearance since the 2010 team won the NFC North, and clinching with a rare victory over their heated rivals made it all the more sweet.

The loss coupled with Minnesota's 41-17 victory over Miami keeps the Packers out of the postseason for the second year in a row.

Chicago had dropped nine of 10 against Green Bay (5-8-1). But the Bears secured their first trip to the playoffs in eight years with their seventh win in eight games.

For a team that came into the season with four straight last-place finishes, it's quite a turnaround. But with the hiring of coach Matt Nagy and trade for Khalil Mack in a busy offseason, the Bears made a huge jump.

WBBM Newsradio’s Josh Liss spoke with Bears coach Matt Nagy on Monday morning following the Bear's victory over the Packers.

WBBM: How does it sound, how does it feel to win the division and to capture a playoffs spot the way you did in front of that boisterous crowd?

"That crowd was great, they were electrifying yesterday - just such a big part of our wins and it is really neat. It has been really great all year long at Soldier Field and we appreciate all that support," Nagy said. "It was fun. Our guys were juiced up and excited and I was happy for everybody."

WBBM: Clinching the NFC North puts you in the postseason. Now the current three-seed you still have a shot at earning a top two-seed and a first-round playoff bye - that's all part of the conversation now. So what are the priorities of maybe resting versus staying full speed? How might you coach differently the last couple games?

"The biggest thing for us is what we have been doing all year long, which is really focusing in on what we can control each week, and I think that goes to be said for this week as well. We want to continue to just keeping the pedal to the metal and making sure our guys understand what we have ahead of us. As you just mentioned, there's a possibility of getting a better seed and possibly getting a bye. So that's what we are focusing on. We know that we talked about finishing all week long and we also said that we don't want to be satisfied, so we will have a great week of practice and approach this like every other game," Nagy said.

WBBM: Not satisfied yet. There's Eddie Jackson making the interception, but leaving the field with an injury. The defense holds up. What might you be able to add on Jackson's ankle and how the defense is still finding ways to impress you?

"As everyone knows, it is difficult to get interceptions with Aaron Rogers and for us to get that at that crucial part of the game was great. And the unfortunately he had that ankle sprain there at the end of the game, so we will keep an eye on it. We will know more here in the next couple of days, as far as the significance of it, but we are just glad that we got that interception," Nagy said.

WBBM: Mitchell Trubisky outplays Aaron Rogers - how are you measuring Trubisky's performance? How did you like it?\

"I really liked it a lot," Nagy said. "I thought he was very composed throughout the game. He made some big time throws in great situations - obviously had a great touchdown throw at the end of the half to Tarick and he had the other one to Trey Burton - just threw it with a lot of conviction. He stayed poised throughout the game and that's him growing right now as a player in this offense and you can see the confidence. He's protected the football, and when you do that with this defense, we are always going to have a chance."

WBBM: It was such a passionate day for the blue and orange. One of your players proposes on bended knee at midfield. You knew it was coming with Charles Leno Jr. What an accomplishment for him and the team.

"Pretty cool, huh," Nagy said. "We have just a bunch of good guys on this team and Charles - I knew that was something that he had in the works, so it was great for him to be able to have that happen at the end of the game and just an exciting time for everybody."

The Bears travel to San Francisco on Sunday to take on 49ers at 3:05 p.m. for Week 16.

Listen weekly for more from the Bears Coaches Show at 7 p.m. on Mondays.