Minnesota -4 @ Chicago 40.5
Tuesday November 1, 11:30am AEDT
Minnesota lost their first game of the year at Philadelphia 21-10, where they were out rushed 3.9ypr to 3.4ypr, out passed 4.9yps to 4.0yps and out gained overall 4.4yppl to 3.8yppl. They were also sacked six times in the game.
The Bears went to Green Bay and lost their starting quarterback early in the game which contributed to a 26-10 loss. Chicago was out rushed 4.5ypr to 3.8ypr, out passed 5.2yps to 4.4yps and out gained overall 5.0yppl to 4.2yppl.
Minnesota averages 2.6ypr against 3.8ypr, 6.3yps against 6.4yps and 4.7yppl against 5.4yppl. They allow 3.7ypr against 4.2ypr, 4.8yps against 6.2yps and 4.4yppl against 5.4yppl.
Chicago averages 4.2ypr against 4.3ypr, 6.7yps against 6.5yps and 5.8yppl against 5.6yppl. They allow 4.0ypr against 4.2ypr, 6.3yps against 6.3yps and 5.3yppl against 5.4yppl.
The Vikings are already playing without both their starting LT and RT’s and it’s looking like WR Cordarrelle Patterson could miss this game due to injury. RB Jerick McKinnon and DT Sharrif Floyd have already been ruled out and CB Marcus Sherels and S Andrew Sendejo also look questionable. For the Bears, potential misses could be CB Bryce Callahan, DT Eddie Goldman (out), CB Deiondre Hall (out), WR Eddie Royal (out) and G Kyle Long (likely out). G Josh Sitton was limited but that’s actually an improvement for him and encouraging. Chicago also gets Jay Cutler back from injury this week.
Chicago qualify in a fundamental home underdog rushing situation, which is 137-70-5. The Bears are also coming off three straight losses but that actually sets them up in a very good situation, which is 64-19-5. My numbers favour Minnesota by two points and project about 37 points. The Bears have scored more than 17 points just once this year, when they scored 23 against Indianapolis. Last week was the first time Minnesota had allowed more than 16 points this year. Their two worse points allowed this year were two road games (16 points to Tennessee and 21 points last week to Philadelphia). The Vikings are just 2-13 straight up the last 15 trips to Chicago and those two wins have both been by three points. You have to go back to 2000 to find the last time they won by more than three points, when the winning margin was 12 points.
Minnesota should be focused after their first loss of the year and Chicago remains badly banged up. The Bears have had extra time to prepare and Minnesota, who are also banged up, are now being asked to lay points on the road with an anemic offense. Winds are expected to be 15-25 MPH and may be gusting to 40 MPH. The under is definitely in play here and a look to Chicago, who qualifies in a couple of really good situations, is potentially worthwhile if we get a better line.
Minnesota 20 Chicago 17
YPR = Yards Per Rush
YPS = Yards Per Pass
YPPL = Yards Per Play