In celebration of the NFL's 100 years, lets through out some lesser known tidbits about the NFL. Let's start with why the rivalry between the Bears and Packers is nasty and it goes back to when the Bears got the Packers kicked out. The following is from a 2015 article on Packers.com.
The Packers were actually kicked out in January 1922 for using at least three players with college eligibility remaining under assumed names in a non-league game against Racine. The game was played Dec. 4, 1921, in Milwaukee and was billed as a battle for the state championship.
By the time the Packers were admitted to the American Professional Football Association (now the NFL) on Aug. 27, 1921, they had already started practicing with many of the same local players they used in 1919 and ’20. Then they played four non-league games using several of those local players and some new recruits with state ties. But heading into their first APFA game on Oct. 23 against Minneapolis, the Packers added three players with pro experience within 48 hours of kickoff. Although the Packers were 4-0 in those non-league games, they may have had good reason for panic.
The late Jack Rudolph, noted Green Bay historian, wrote years later the rumor was Green Bay had to beat Minneapolis to remain in the league. My suspicion is it wasn’t necessarily a win-or-else ultimatum, but Green Bay needed to win, or at least be competitive, to have any chance of scheduling future home games or attractive opponents. The Packers beat the Marines and added two more experienced pros the next week. Of those five new players, four played at Notre Dame with Curly Lambeau in 1918 or the following year.
Turnover of the roster continued and in late November the Chicago Cardinals and Chicago Staleys (now Bears) both agreed to play the Packers. At the time, many games were scheduled week to week. It was a big deal for the Packers to land the games in Chicago, but by then they didn’t have enough local players to even practice in Green Bay. Their players were scattered across the Midwest and met in Chicago to practice on Friday and Saturday before both games. According to The Milwaukee Journal, the Packers also practiced in Chicago before the Racine game. Meanwhile, rumors flew all week that Racine was loading up with ringers for the game. The result was a 3-3 tie. The next day, the Racine Journal-News reported, “Green Bay has (sic) several Notre Dame men from this year’s lineup with her.”
The Journal-News listed them as Buck Shaw, Hunk Anderson and Fred Larson. What’s more, among the lineups that appeared in the Racine, Green Bay and two Milwaukee papers, there were three positions at which three different starters were listed for the Packers. In all, a total of six different names were listed that hadn’t previously played for them. News traveled slow in those days, and it wasn’t until eight days later that the South Bend Tribune reported Anderson, Larson and Arthur Garvey, all of whom had eligibility remaining, had played for the Packers in Milwaukee, and that Notre Dame had declared them ineligible and stripped them of their football letters.
Pro football came under fire and Green Bay was forced from the league at the next APFA meeting in January. Six months later, the APFA changed its name to the National Football League and thanks to Lambeau’s persistence Green Bay was readmitted.
Thus the hated between the teams is actually justified, as compared to the fake hatred between most teams.