Chicago Sun-Times

Packers and Bears mix at Nike event Tuesday

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While the Packers and Bears were bundled up on the sidelines, Nike officials weren't complaining about the rainy and chilly conditions at Soldier Field.

It was, after all, the Hyperwarm Bowl, an event to showcase their latest innovations to provide warmth, breathability and protection. More than 100 local high school players got to test it out and meet Devin Hester and Earl Bennett of the Bears and Jordy Nelson and Ryan Grant of the Packers.

The NFL players cheered on players, and they provided inspiration to Chicagoland seniors.

Bennett even played catch with some of the participating athletes.

"We're showing off what Nike is doing and, at the same time, we're watching these kids have a lot of fun," Grant said. "Whenever it's with kids, I'm with it."

Hester said he hasn't had a chance to try out the new cold-weather gear, but he looks forward to trying it soon. A native of South Florida, he isn't a fan of the wintry conditions.

"Whatever keeps you warm," he said, "I'm going to try it out."

The Packers and Bears are set to play Sunday at Lambeau Field. But there were no hard feelings between the players Tuesday.

"We walked in the room, and they were looking at us crazy. But then one person started talking," Hester said. "It's a business on the field. But off the field, you got to be more social. You can't take what happens on the field and carry it off the field."

Bennett jokingly told Nelson, "It wouldn't hurt to run around and pull a hamstring today."

Although the Packers aren't undefeated anymore, Grant said the team has plenty to play for, so he doesn't see them becoming less aggressive.

"I don't see it, especially with what we're trying to do with home field advantage," he said. "I think we're going to keep it on. But, of course, that's [Mike McCarthy's] choice, and he makes that final decision. But with what we're trying to do as a team, I think we kind of keep that foot [on the pedal]."

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This page contains a single entry by Sean Jensen published on December 20, 2011 6:59 PM.

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