03/18/2010 05:12 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

Chicago Bears Playoff Chances Evaporate After Loss To Packers

The Chicago Bears will not be participating in the 2009 NFL Playoffs. It was official once the team suffered a 21-14 home defeat to the Green Bay Packers.

The Bears fell to 5-8, and even with three wins to finish the season can't top the 9-4 Packers. The Minnesota Vikings lead the NFC North at 11-2.

Chicago also can't catch the 8-5 Dallas Cowboys for a potential Wild Card berth due to tie breaker rules.

Chicago led Green Bay before surrendering the lead. Mark Potash of the Chicago Sun-Times described the collapse: "Cutler's hurried pass for Johnny Knox along the left sideline was a can-o'-corn for Packers safety Nick Collins, who picked it off, returned to the Bears' 11-yard line and ... you know the rest."

A controversial two consecutive timeouts late in the game resulted in plenty of post-game criticism of head coach Lovie Smith.

Ken Green of Gapers Block tried to look at the bright side of the elimination, but found few things to be happy about and urged everyone but "sports geeks" to avoid the Bears' final three games.