Both the Bears and Vikings are coming off 20+ point losses where each team allowed 41 points to their division rivals. While we all know the Bears have more optimism for next season, the Vikings recent performances have left more to desire with the playoffs around the corner. Let’s look at the odds and matchups to see if the Bears can upset the Vikings or if the Vikings will successfully regroup before the wildcard round.
Minnesota Vikings Vs. Chicago Bears Betting Odds
The Vikings are favored on the road (-5.5) over the Bears (+5.5). The over/under line started at 46, but has moved down to 43.5 after the news of Fields sitting out of week 18 with his injury.
Minnesota Vikings Vs. Chicago Bears Prediction
The Vikings look like one of the most questionable teams heading into the playoffs after losing a 41-17 blowout to the Packers. Despite their 12-4 record and top 3 seeding in the NFC, the Vikings offense only put up 3 points until the 4th quarter. The Vikings will be playing their starters this Sunday because they still want a chance for the #2 seed. However, the 2nd see may not be all it’s cracked up to be if they end up facing the Packers for the 2nd time in three weeks. Good news for the Vikings is they should be able to win this game no problem since they are facing QB Nathan Peterman and a battered Bears offense.
We already knew the Bears are heading nowhere this season, but a 41-10 loss is not an encouraging second to last game of the season. QB Justin Fields has impressed us all with his rushing ability, which he showcased once again with a 132 yard rushing performance, but he still has a long way to go as a passer. Fields went 7 of 21 for only 75 yards against the Lions who hold the statistically worst defense in the league. The Bears have also announced backup QB Nathan Peterman will start in the season finale as Justin Fields works through a strained hip. The Bears clearly need regroup in the offseason and provide better protection and weapons for Fields going into 2023.
I’ll take the Vikings to win and cover in this one. With Justin Fields out, it’s hard to imagine the Bears having much of an offense and the Vikings will want to get some momentum going into the playoffs after their horrendous loss to the Packers.
Prediction: Vikings 24-10, Under hits.
Over is 4-0 in Vikings last 4 vs. NFC North.
Bears are 4-9-1 ATS in their last 14 home games.
Over is 8-2 in Bears last 10 games overall.
Minnesota Vikings Injuries: Garrett Bradbury (D), James Lynch (O), Brian Asamoah (Q), Irv Smith (Q), Everson Griffen (Q), Jonathan Bullard (Q),
Chicago Bears Injuries: Dante Pettis (Q), Ja’Tyre Carter (Q), Sterling Weatherford (Q), Ledarius Mack (Q), Christian Albright (Q), Andre Anthony (O), Michael Schofield (Q),
Check out the key matchups and mismatches for Vikings vs Bears below.
The Bears Offensive Line vs the Vikings Defensive Front
The Bears offensive line plays a huge factor in the Bears offensive struggles this season. They have given up 55 sacks, the most league wide. This included the line allowing Fields to be sacked 7 times. The Bears offensive line has also suffered through some injuries through this season, including both Teven Jenkins and Michael Schofield leaving the game early to injury against the Lions. Fortunately Fields won’t play so the Bears do not have to worry about seeing their star QB risk further injury, but the line still needs to protect Peterman. Protection may be more crucial for Peterman, who lacks the mobility that allows Fields to evade defenders.
Vikings Pass Offense vs Bears Secondary
The Vikings offense looked like a shell of itself versus the Packers last week. CB Jaire Alexander shut down Justin Jefferson, with Jefferson only recording one catch on the day. It was clear without Jefferson producing, the Vikings pass offense faced major limitations. Kirk Cousins also hurt the team’s scoring by throwing three interceptions, including this pick six.
🚨 PICK-SIX ALERT 🚨
— Green Bay Packers (@packers) January 1, 2023
The Bears secondary does not hold the star power of a Jaire Alexander, but have proved capable of making big plays. Two weeks ago, the Bears nabbed two interceptions and a fumble of the Bills offense. Look out for Bears interception leaders Eddie Jackson and Kyler Gordon to snatch any errant throws from Cousins.