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LAKE FOREST, Ill. -- Bears linebacker Brian Urlacher acknowledged the team allowing what he called "big games" against Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Michael Vick.
Yet Vick still hasn't emerged victorious against the Bears, which is exactly the way the club hopes to keep it Monday night when it faces the Eagles at Lincoln Financial Field.
"We've never contained him," said Urlacher of Vick on ESPN's "Mike & Mike in the Morning" on Thursday. "We keep him in the pocket pretty good. He has big games against us, but somehow we find ways to win. We get a turnover here or there or something like that. But you never stop the guy, I know that much."
Winless in three career starts against Chicago, Vick has completed 58.4 percent of his passes for 803 yards and three touchdowns to go with three interceptions against the Bears. Vick passed for 333 yards and two touchdowns in a loss to Chicago last Nov. 28 at Soldier Field, but the quarterback tossed a critical interception in the first half to Chris Harris with his team down by only one point (14-13) that proved disastrous.
Despite the lack of success against the Bears over his first 8 NFL seasons, Vick spoke glowingly of Urlacher and their various head-to-head matchups.
Vick called their history "unique."
"I think the fact we both came in around the same time, and we had so many epic battles against one another, all that I've been on the losing end of," Vick said. "But just the opportunity to play against him, the great player he is, and what he brings to the table, it's a pleasure and an honor playing against him. It's always a challenge. That's what it's about: The best going against the best."
Urlacher definitely categorizes Vick among the game's elite signal-callers, adding that the quarterback has improved as a passer over the past couple of seasons, but still looks to do damage by running the ball.
"His best assets are still his legs," Urlacher said. "He makes good decisions with the football, but he still needs to run the football. That's where he can hurt people. He's still faster than everybody, can run the football and get out of bounds. That's what he's been doing the last couple of games."
Vick credited the Bears coaching staff and Urlacher for the success of the club's Cover-2 heavy scheme, saying that "when you've got a player like that, he can demand greatness out of a lot of other players."
Looking back at last year's loss at Soldier Field, Vick said the home team shut down the Eagles in several critical facets. The Eagles racked up 398 total yards, but were held scoreless in the third quarter, while Vick suffered four sacks.
"They did a real good job in all three areas: Third down, red zone, and first and second downs," Vick said. "They just made it kind of difficult for us. We got off to a rough start in the beginning, and we were able to pick it up in the second and third quarter. We just didn't finish in the fourth. That hurt us."Michael C. Wright covers the Bears for ESPNChicago.com and ESPN 1000.