The Chicago Bears will travel to U.S. Bank Stadium on Sunday afternoon to face the Minnesota Vikings in a divisional battle. The Bears are 6-7 on the season and are coming off a dominant 36-7 win against the Houston Texans to snap a six-game losing streak. Mitchell Trbisky finished the game 24-of-33 for 267 yards with three touchdown passes. The Vikings are also sitting at 6-7 after losing last week to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers 26-14. These teams met a few weeks ago in Chicago where Minnesota picked up a 19-13 victory. In that game, Kirk Cousins finished 25-of-36 for 292 yards with two touchdowns and an interception.
These teams have been disappointing from where they expected to be at this point in the season but still have a chance to capture one of the Wild Card spots in the NFC. Let’s take a closer look into these two teams and figure out where we should end up placing our money with the hopes of ending up with a little extra money during the holiday season.
Get David Montgomery InvolvedThe major flaw in the Chicago Bears offense is their lack of a rushing presence as they rank 28th in the league with 93.2 rushing yards per game. Their leading rusher is David Montgomery who has 170 carries for 760 yards and four touchdowns. He seems to be the outlier on this team as he has the 12th-most rushing yards in the league but the Bears need him to have a huge game. In his last game against the Texans, he did just that as he finished with 11 carries for 113 yards and a touchdown. If Montgomery can run as well as he did last week, the Bears are in a great position to win the game.
The Minnesota Vikings are tied for the 19th-best in the league against opponents running the ball as they allow 119.9 yards on the ground per game. In their last game against Tampa Bay, they ran the ball 26 times for 107 yards and a touchdown. The Buccaneers do not run the ball often and the fact they committed to the ground game speaks wonders to how the Vikings are unable to stop the run. Look for David Montgomery to play a big factor in this game.
MVP Vote Getter?Don’t tell Dalvin Cook that the value for a running back isn’t there anymore as he has been nothing short of spectacular this season. On the season, Cook has 273 rushing attempts for 1,352 yards and 14 touchdown runs. All those are top-two numbers and are the main reason why the Minnesota Vikings still have a chance to make the playoffs after a horrific start to their season. In his other game against the Bears this season, he had run the ball 30 times for 96 yards and failed to find the end zone. If he can find a way to break a run and put some points on the board, the Vikings will be feeling great in this game.
The Chicago Bears haven’t been able to do better than just about league average at defending the run as they are 17th in the NFL as they allow 115.5 rushing yards per game. In their last game against the Houston Texans, the Bears defense allowed them to run the ball 27 times for 108 yards. If Chicago can limit Dalvin Cook like they did here and their previous matchup, this could be a great sign for the Bears in picking up a win.
- Minnesota: 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games vs NFC North
- Minnesota: 38-13 ATS in their last 51 games following a straight up loss
- Chicago: 1-6 ATS in their last 7 games vs NFC North
- Chicago: 1-7 ATS in their last 8 games following a ATS win