NFC North Foe Returns to Soldier Field
The Chicago Bears (5-3) host division rival Detroit (3-5) at Soldier Field. #DaBears are currently a seven-point favorite with an over/under of 44.5 according to Yahoo Sports. OLB Khalil Mack and WR Allen Robinson are full participants and are primed to return. This is the perfect time to welcome them back to action. Sunday marks the beginning of a three-game stretch against the NFC North within a 12-day span. Chicago currently has a half-game lead over the Vikings in the division, and they remain hungry.
RB Tarik Cohen recently told chicagobears.com, “We feel like first place right now doesn’t matter at all because it’s all about where you finish at the end.”
Chicago has not fared well against this Lions Organization. The Bears are 1-9 against Detroit dating back to the 2013 season. This is a new day and a new era for both teams. Both fired its respective head coach this off-season and hired a hot young coordinator to take the helm. At this stage in the season, it seems they’re both heading in slightly different directions.
Chicago is currently a top 10 squad on both sides of the ball. Coach Matt Nagy is consistently demonstrating he is the right man to lead this reformation project back to the “Monsters of the Midway.” This upcoming stretch of games will be the biggest test of his young career. Division games are always “must-win” ball games. Detroit sits at the bottom of the NFC North and is battling a two-game losing streak.
Roquan Smith told chicagobears.com, “We’re going to hone in on Detroit and do what we have to do to take care of this one.”
Detroit sits in the lower half of the league in scoring offense (20th), and 22nd overall in yards per game. QB Matthew Stafford and company have only managed 23 points in their previous two games. The Lions do not fare much better defensively sitting in 18th overall for yards allowed. This unit has 24 sacks (tied with the Bears) which assist a stout passing defense ranked fourth overall. But Stafford is a gunslinger and is capable of taking over a game.
Chicago’s defensive unit has been downright dominant this season. They are a big reason this team sits in third place (+82) in point differential behind only the Rams and Chiefs. Their depth on the defensive side of the ball seems to be the key to their success. The unit has only surrendered 19 points in Mack’s absence and all signs point to his return. The former Defensive Player of the Year returns his production of five sacks, four forced fumbles, and an interception in limited playing time.
DC Vic Fangio recently told chicagobears.com, “We’ve done a pretty good job overall of not giving up the big play. We’ve done a nice job of playing the run.”
Translation, “We are coming for Detroit.” Bears win this first matchup 28-17. The tandem of Jordan Howard and Tarik Cohen run roughshod against the 30th ranked rushing defense.
Until then, stay thirsty. JT out!