Denver Broncos vs. Chicago Bears
Two teams thinking playoffs face off as the Denver Broncos host the Chicago Bears. The Broncos are -3 point favorites over the Bears with an over/under point total set at 36.
The Denver Broncos have won five games in a row and have moved from the basement to the penthouse in the AFC West. While Denver had a wave of injuries last season so some improvement was expected this year, how they have gotten to the lead has been a surprise to most. The story in Denver has been Tim Tebow who doesn’t seem to do much except win. Tebow’s numbers are less than ordinary completing 47.5 percent of his passes for 1,054 yards with 10 touchdowns and an interception while rushing for 468 yards and three touchdowns. Not matter how it all turns out for Tebow his body of work this season has been nothing short of remarkable and even his harshest critics can’t argue with the results when it comes to wins. Willis McGahee has also had a rebirth in the backfield averaging 4.9 yards per carry and scoring four touchdowns. Eric Decker has caught 39 passes and has eight touchdowns, Eddie Royal has 18 catches, and Demaryius Thomas is being thrown to more and more as he looks to be Tebow’s favorite target. Defensively Denver has 33 sacks, 10 fumble recoveries, and nine interceptions and have a minus three turnover ratio while they allow 366.4 yards and 24.3 points. Wesley Woodyard has 81 tackles, D.J. Williams has 66 tackles, and Von Miller has 10.5 sacks though he missed last game and is questionable for this one. The last four games will decide the entire season for Denver.
The Chicago Bears are still in solid position for the NFC Wild Card race but they have lost their last two games in a row making them 0-2 since they lost Jay Cutler to a thumb injury. The Bears’ injuries are starting to really mount on the offense and while the defense has played well scoring points isn’t what they are meant to do. Caleb Hanie has taken over for Jay Cutler and after looking decent in his first game he regressed in his second as Chicago scored just three points and he missed some opportunities, enough that Chicago may be looking into alternatives even this late in the season. Matt Forte suffered a knee injury last week as well so it looks like it will be Marion Barber at least for the short term. Johnny Knox has game breaking speed as does Devin Hester but with Hanie completing less than 50 percent of his passes the passing game has grinded to a halt. The Bears have 24 sacks, 10 fumble recoveries, and 16 interceptions and they have a plus seven turnover ratio while they allow 359.3 yards and 20.2 points per game. Lance Briggs has 84 tackles, Charles Tillman has 80 tackles, and Julius Peppers has eight sacks. The Bears’ best chance at this point seems to be playing the field position game in hopes of giving their offense a short field to work with.
Denver is 5-0 against the spread in their last five games overall, 4-0 against the spread following a win, and 1-4-1 against the spread in their last six home games. Chicago is 5-2 against the spread in their last seven games overall, 5-12-1 against the spread in their last 18 games as a road underdog, and 1-4 against the spread following a game which they didn’t cover.
The total in this one has dropped to 36 and I still don’t see it getting past this dreadfully low number as this has all of the makings of a fast paced ground game with some big collisions of linebackers and running backs.