Originally posted on Larry Brown Sports  |  Last updated 12/20/12

Mike Ditka is the ultimate Chicago Bear. He was a five-time All Pro linebacker with the Bears in the 1960s who won a championship as a player in 1963 and a head coach in 1985. People who are associated with Chicago are supposed to hate the Green Bay Packers, so hearing Ditka gush about Aaron Rodgers and company is probably painful for Bears fans. If so and you are one, avert your eyes. “I’m still a Bear fan. I got a right to be a Bear fan,” Ditka said in an interview with the Journal Sentinel. “We won two championships in the last 60 years – I played on one and coached the other one. So I got a right. I’ll always be a Chicago Bear. “Now, I’m a Packer fan too – for one reason. First of all, I love the coach, he’s from Pittsburgh. But Aaron Rodgers is the best quarterback in football – without question. He gets it, he understands, he’s a class act. He’s a great leader. I hope they give him a little more protection than they’re giving him right now or he’s going to get his (expletive) busted.” Isn’t that two reasons? In any event, it’s tough not to like the Rodgers and the Packers as someone who lives and breathes football. Chicago and Green Bay may be division rivals, but there certainly wasn’t much of a rivalry this season. The Packers have been a much better team in recent history and that trend has continued this year. Somewhere in heaven, Chris Farley is wearing his “Da Bears” attire and shedding a tear because of Coach Ditka’s comments.

This article first appeared on Larry Brown Sports and was syndicated with permission.

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