The Bears have been the NFL’s winningest franchise since before the team was called the Bears and before the league was called the NFL: In 1920, the inaugural season of the American Professional Football Association, the Decatur Staleys won a league-high 10 games. The APFA became the NFL, the Decatur Staleys became the Chicago Bears, and the franchise has always maintained its lead as the team with the most wins.
That can change soon.
The Bears currently have 783 wins, and the Packers are one behind at 782. That means that if the Packers beat the Vikings and the Bears lose to the 49ers in Week One, they’ll be tied at 783 wins. And then the Packers and Bears face off on Sunday night in Week Two, with the Packers having the chance to surpass the Bears for the first time ever.
As noted by NFL researcher Jack Andrade, the Packers have gained a huge amount of ground on the Bears in the last 30 years: Chicago entered the 1992 season with 85 more wins than Green Bay, but since 1992 the Packers have won 84 more games than the Bears. 1992 was Brett Favre’s first season as the Packers’ starting quarterback; they’ve had 30 years of first-ballot Hall of Fame quarterbacks with Favre and Aaron Rodgers since then.
The Vegas oddsmakers think the Packers will win about five more games than the Bears this year: The Packers’ over/under win total is 11.5, while the Bears’ is 6.5. So it’s highly likely that the Packers will surpass the Bears for the franchise win title. Perhaps in a nationally televised prime time game in Week Two.