Monday, November 16, 2020, Soldier Field, Chicago, Illinois, 8:15 p.m. ET
Vikings at Bears Betting Preview: Vikings (-2.5/-120), Bears (+2.5/-102)
The Vikings (3-5) have looked like a different team the past two weeks, when they have posted back-to-back wins over the Green Bay Packers and Detroit Lions. Running back Dalvin Cook is the type of player whom opposing coaches refer to as a “game wrecker” because of his ability to change momentum on a single play.
How good has Cook been? Well, he rushed for 206 yards and two touchdowns last week, which followed a four-touchdown performance (three rushing, one receiving) a week earlier. Cook has 858 rushing yards, tops in the NFL through Week 9. His 12 rushing touchdowns are one shy of his career high, set last year.
Minnesota is not as reliable on defense, having allowed 40-plus points twice this season. However, the Vikings are trending in the right direction in that category, as well, as they are coming off a week in which they gave up a season-low 20 points to Detroit.
The Bears (5-4) are sliding, and questions are swirling about whether head coach Matt Nagy will give up play-calling duties this week. Nagy admitted that it is a possibility but indicated that he will not tell media members before the game whether he has taken himself out of the equation.
At this point, the Bears might be wise to try something different to shake up the offense. The team has lost three games in a row, and an injury-riddled offensive line has struggled badly to provide protection for veteran quarterback Nick Foles. Nagy’s playbook is complex, and his plays often require time for the quarterback to diagnose coverages and make reads down the field, and Foles simply is not getting enough time in the pocket to achieve that task.
That said, it is not all doom and gloom for Chicago. The Bears boast a top-tier defense with a superstar leader, linebacker Khalil Mack. If the offense can limit mistakes and put a couple touchdowns on the board, the defense is more than capable of doing its part.
Vikings at Bears Betting Pick for Week 10
These two teams know each other well, and division rivalries such as this one tend to produce close, low-scoring games. For reference, look no further than last season, when the Bears beat the Vikings 16-6 in Chicago and 21-19 in Minneapolis. Offensive barnburners, they were not.
Cook is electric, but he has averaged only 2.5 yards per carry against the Bears in his career. Still, it is hard to argue that Chicago’s anemic offense can find a way to outscore Minnesota. Could this game finally mark the end of Kirk Cousins’ 0-9 drought on “Monday Night Football”?
Vikings at Bears Betting Pick:
Vikings 20, Bears 16
Vikings at Bears Best Bet for Week 10
Both teams are desperate for a victory, and the Bears figure to play inspired defense at home in front of a national TV audience. But it ultimately might not matter whether Nagy or an assistant coach calls Chicago’s plays. Without a dependable offensive line, the plays could break down regardless, leading to another low-scoring affair.
Vikings at Bears Best Bet: UNDER 43.5 total points (-110)