Chicago Bears vs. Detroit Lions: NFC North Betting Preview and Predictions

Chicago Bears vs. Detroit Lions
Sunday, 9/29/13, 1:00 PM EST
Opening Point Spread:  Detroit -3
Current Betting Line:  Detroit -3
Opening Total:  47
Current Total:  4.5
Odds Courtesy of Bookmaker

The Detroit Lions will need to pressure Chicago Bears QB Jay Cutler Sunday
The Detroit Lions will need to pressure Chicago Bears QB Jay Cutler Sunday

Chicago will look to improve to 4-0 and increase its lead atop the NFC North division to two games, as it comes off a 40-23 victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers as one-point road favorites in Week 3, while going OVER the betting total for a third consecutive contest.  The Bears are tied for 19th in the league in scoring defense at 24.7 points per game, but the unit has recorded six fumble recoveries and five interceptions.  “That’s what we do, we take the ball away,” commented Bears defensive end Julius Peppers.  Chicago is 4-9 SU and 4-8-1 ATS as underdogs the last two-plus seasons, with the UNDER being 7-6 in that situation.

The Bears are 3-0 for just the third time in the last 22 seasons—winning their division and advancing to the NFC Championship Game in those occurrences.  Chicago’s offense is being led by quarterback Jay Cutler, who has completed 67.3 percent of his passes this season—entering with a 94.2 passer rating.  After leading the NFL with 44 takeaways in 2012, the team paces the league with 44 points off turnovers this season.  All eyes will be on cornerback Charles Tillman in his quest to cover one of the best players in football, as he’s listed as questionable with knee and groin injuries.

Detroit has already taken care of business at home against a division opponent earlier this season, as it picked up a 34-24 season-opening victory against the Minnesota Vikings as four-point favorites on Sept. 8.  “It means more because it’s an NFC North game,” commented Lions head coach Jim Schwartz.  The Lions have dropped nine of the last 10 meetings in this series, including both during the 2012 campaign, which can’t be ignored when making your pro football picks Sunday.  Detroit is 8-9 SU and 7-9-1 ATS over the last two-plus seasons, with the OVER going 9-8 in that situation.

The Lions have one of the more dynamic offensive combinations in the league, with quarterback Matthew Stafford and wide receiver Calvin Johnson, as the duo have connected 17 times for 268 yards and three touchdowns.  Detroit is tied for sixth in the league in averaging 27.3 points per game, while sitting fourth in racking up 410.7 yards per contest.

Sports bettors will likely play the total in this affair, as the UNDER is 6-2 in the Bears’ last eight games versus division foes.

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