(WSCR) – Not as if the Bears-Packers rivalry needs any more intensity, but if the Packers were to beat the Bears on Sunday they would clinch a spot in the playoffs.

The Bears have already clinched the NFC North and have guaranteed themselves, at least, the second seed in the NFC. But the outside chance at the NFC’s top-seed and a rivalry game may bring out the best the Bears have, as well as their best players.

With only an outside chance at the top-seed, Lovie Smith might choose to rest some of his starters, in order to avoid any unnecessary injuries.

The Packers’ simplest path to the playoffs is clear: beat the rival Bears at Lambeau Field on Sunday and they’re in.

The Packers (9-6) also could make the playoffs if they lose to the Bears and other circumstances fall in their favor, but coach Mike McCarthy certainly doesn’t want his players thinking that way.

“It’s the same talk I give to my football team: We need to get to 10 wins, and until we get to 10 wins nothing else matters,” McCarthy said Monday. “That’s where we stand. We’re focused on win No. 10 against the Chicago Bears. Scenarios, I couldn’t even tell you what they are.”

Copyright 2010 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. STATS LLC and The Associated Press contributed to this article. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.

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