Two teams headed in polar opposite directions square off Sunday in Week 11 NFL action. The Bears are creeping up the NFC standings and are simply rolling as they enter this match-up as winners of their previous four games. Jay Cutler is silencing his doubters with his excellent play, and looks poised to lead the Bears to another playoff appearance in January.
San Diego meanwhile is absolutely reeling. Despite their bundles of talent, yet again they are failing to perform up to expectations. Last week the Chargers were embarrassed at home, as Oakland’s backup running back Michael Bush dominated a soft defensive front of San Diego en route to a crushing 24-17 defeat. The Chargers are no longer leading the weak AFC West division, and with the Broncos and Raiders playing very well of late, it’s no guarantee they’ll be able to regain what has long been their division to lose. San Diego enters this pivotal contest down a plethora of key bodies as well. Already down key guard Kris Dielman, Marcus McNeill and Louis Vasquez are both fighting injuries and aren’t expected to play on what is expected to be a makeshift offensive line come Sunday. Not to mention the fact that key wide-out Malcolm Floyd will remain on the sidelines for this one.
Chargers vs. Bears Spread, Line and Betting Odds:
San Diego Chargers +3.5 (-110) @
Chicago Bears -3.5(-110)
Over 45 (-110)
Under 45 (-110)
Chargers vs. Bears Pick:
Simply put, the Bears haven’t lost since Week 5, while their opponents from San Diego haven’t won since then. The Chargers looked like a defeated team last Thursday against the Raiders, and it seems as if they’re either not that great, or have completely quit. One thing is for certain, if they turn in the performance they did in Week 10, they will get routed by the Bears in the Windy City.
San Diego was carved up by Michael Bush last week, and if they didn’t spend the week tightening up their porous run defense, expect Matt Forte to inflict even more damage. Forte has been one of the game’s most prolific runners this season, and if San Diego allows him to expose openings, it could be the end for the Chargers’ playoff aspirations.
The Bears will also be a handful for the struggling Philip Rivers. Once considered one of the top-5 quarterbacks in football, Rivers has had an abysmal season with many questioning his seemingly fading arm strength. Rivers is definitely a fierce competitor, but the unfortunate reality of late has been his play is keeping the Chargers from being all that competitive. He won’t face any sort of reprieve from a stingy Bears defense that should make easy work blitzing a depleted offensive line. Julius Peppers and Brian Urlacher will live in San Diego’s backfield on Sunday disrupting Rivers’ rhythm on the attack.
Expect Chicago to face minimal resistance when on offense in this one. Not only to they face a defensive unit that has struggled of late, their offense has been absolutely dynamic in recent showings. Cutler is atop his game, and Forte will be licking his chops going up against a defense that ranks 24th in the league against the run.
The Chargers are simply bottoming out, yet still seem to garner immense respect from those who set the odds week in week out. Don’t be fooled, this is a football team that has bottomed out, and one which is currently struggling in every facet of the game. San Diego is 2-9 against the spread over their past 11 games, and have struggled with Chicago of late. Expect the Chargers to be overmatched physically and get pounded into submission in what should be a Windy City whooping.
PICK = Bears -3.5