It's here! The Chicago Bears take on the Green Bay Packers tonight for their home opener and the city is going to get crazy! Of course the NFL Kickoff event has already started in Grant Park. In honor of the big day, here are some interesting facts you may not have known about the Bears! NBC has 100 facts in honor of 100 seasons, but a few are below for you:
-The Bears were originally called the Decatur Staleys, but changed their name to the Bears in 1922 to pay homage to the Chicago Cubs.
-The Bears have played at Soldier Field since 1971, but prior to that they played their games at Wrigley Field for nearly half a century.
-Khalil Mack’s six-year, $141 million contract was the biggest ever given out to a defensive player.
-The Staleys nickname came from the A.E. Staley food starch company, located in Decatur, Illinois. That city was the home of the Bears’ franchise for its first year of existence.
-After the Staleys’ first season, Halas bought the rights to the team for $100 and moved them to Chicago.
-The Bears borrowed their blue and orange team colors from another Illinois institution: the University of Illinois in Champaign, the alma mater of Halas.
-When the Bears moved from Wrigley Field to Soldier Field, they left something interesting behind: the cement bases for their field goal posts. The bases were found when crews re-did Wrigley’s playing surface after the 2007 season.
-Because of those renovations, Soldier Field was stripped of its status as a national historic landmark in 2006.
-The Bears have played two games outside of the United States, winning both of them. They will play a third game abroad this season, taking on the Oakland Raiders in London.
-When the temperature is at 32 degrees or below at kick-off, the Bears are 46-48-1 in their history, according to Pro Football Reference.
Did you know any of these?