NFL Sunday Picks, Week 13: Detroit Lions at Chicago Bears

Detroit Lions at Chicago Bears

Time: NOON (EST), FOX

Spread: CHI -3

Total: 44

Odds c/o 5dimes

The Chicago Bears find itself 5-6 and tied with the Minnesota Vikings for second place in the NFC North. Both teams trail 8-3 Green Bay, but a victory here would inch Chicago closer to a division crown, that seemed at least improbable heading into this season. That said, the Bears have dropped five straight games since its hot 5-1 start, and simply any kind of win is needed to remain afloat.

The Bears host the Detroit Lions as 3-point favorites in Sunday’s affair, with the over-under set at 44 points according to NFL oddsmakers at bookmaker 5dimes.

CHI

Back in the saddle is one Mitch Trubisky, for better or worse (mostly worse). Trubisky led the Bears to a 25-41 loss, and many Bears faithful have precious little confidence in the possible bust. He completed 26 of 46 passes, but not without two interceptions and incurring three sacks. While Trubisky occasionally looks like the phenom he was drafted to be, the miscues make him arguably the NFL’s most frustrating quarterback. For a Bears team struggling just to find a victory, things are pretty rough.

Nick Files helped the offense amass just 223.3 yards per game, though, so getting worse hardly seemed like a possibility. That said, a No. 23 ranked pass offense seems a lot worse when considering the Bears only get 82.2 yards per game from its rush offense. The Bears have a fairly strong defense, limiting teams to just 22.7 points per game, but its offense is so putrid, so dismal, that it still winds up with a -3.1 point differential, averaging under 20 points per game.

David Montgomery has done a middling job as the lead running back. He averages a respectable 4.0 yards-per-carry, but he has just one TD rush. Compounding this issue is the fact the Bears have no rushers really to help his efforts. Trubisky has had 12 decent carries tallying 8.4 yards-per, but the Bears still have scored just two rushing TDs the entire season, with Nick Foles having accounted for the other. That hardly bodes well, either.

One certain bright spot has been the receiving of lead receiver Allen Robinson. He has 829 yards and five touchdowns, which leads the team and tied for the lead (TDs). Falling off from Robinson, the No. 2 receiver Darnell Mooney has just 385 yards, and No. 3 receiver Anthony Miller trails him at 377 yards. The Bears need to involve their secondary and tertiary targets, and the backfield needs more performers—flat out. This is not a contending team, but it could be back on track somewhat with a win over the lowly Detroit Lions this week.

DET

Well, one certain thing about this matchup between the Chicago Bears and Detroit Lions, is that one of them will end a losing streak. The Lions have lost its last two games and four of its last five, overall.  What perhaps is more disconcerting, is that the Lions have not been close in any of those losses. The lone victory was over Washington. Things are hardly rosy, and that all comes after a respectable enough 3-3 start.

The Lions rank No. 13 in passing yards with 250.4 per game, but its rush lingers as one of the worst, ranking No. 27 and managing just 96.6 yards per contest. Overall, it does not stack up well either: The Lions score just 22.9 per game, while its defense surrenders nearly 30. It all adds up to a -6.9 point differential, which is befitting of its 4-7 record, anyway.

Matthew Stafford has continued to be a good quarterback, but his lack of success certainly caps him from being “Great.” Stafford has 2,876 yards at a 63.2 percent clip, but he has eight interceptions and 31 sacks (nearly three per game) for a total loss of 216 yards. His passer rating of 92.7 is decent. Overall, it is just not enough, not with the backfield producing so little.

Veteran running back Adrian Peterson seems to have hit the wall of his career, managing just 3.7 yards-per-carry on his team-high 119 attempts. No. 2 back D’Andre Swift has been more productive, but he has just 70 carries to Peterson’s massive load. Swift tallies 4.7 yards-per-carry and he matches Peterson with four touchdowns. Stafford has been decent, with a 3.9 yard-per-carry average; but he has no touchdowns. There are certainly some bright spots in Detroit, but they are the same bright spots that have dotted this team’s continued mediocrity.

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