This week’s NFL action brings us an intra-conference matchup between the Buffalo Bills and the Chicago Bears. The Bears are being listed as a hefty 10-point favorite on the road with an over/under of 37.5 points.
Chicago snapped out of a two-game losing skid last week, beating the Jets 24-10 to improve to 4-3 on the season. In the process, they went from last place in the NFC North to first place in the NFC North, thanks to the three other teams in the division all losing. Of course, that means the division is as balanced and competitive as they get, so the Bears need to keep winning if they want to stay on top.
The Bills, on the other hand, remain at the bottom of the AFC East at 2-6. To be fair, Buffalo put up a fight against the Patriots on Monday Night Football. However, the Bills have scored 13 points or less in each of their last five games, which makes it difficult to win games in the NFL. Even with a fairly manageable schedule the second half of the season, there’s not a lot of optimism in Western New York.
With Josh Allen still out with an elbow injury and Derek Anderson suffering a concussion in Monday’s loss to New England, the Bills have little choice but to give Nathan Peterman the start on Sunday against the Bears. Peterman is the quarterback equivalent to a dumpster fire, throwing three touchdowns and nine interceptions in his brief NFL career. He’s proven time and time again that he’s not good enough to play in this league, yet Sean McDermott keeps him around.
It certainly won’t help that he’ll be facing a strong Chicago defense this week. The Bears had little trouble shutting down the Jets last week, giving up just 10 points and yielding a mere 207 total yards. Against a Buffalo offense that’s lacking playmakers and a competent offensive line, the Bears are likely to have similar success on that side of the ball this week.
Turning the Corner
Mitchell Trubisky isn’t receiving a ton of attention this season with Pat Mahomes and the rookie quarterbacks getting a lot of publicity. But he has quietly turned a corner in his development. Trubisky has 13 touchdowns to just three interceptions in his last four games, throwing for over 300 yards in three of those games. It’s also worth mentioning that the Bears are averaging close to 33 points per game during that stretch.
The Buffalo defense is also lacking the credit they deserve. They’ve taken their lumps a few weeks, but the Bills have held their own defensively more times than not. With a solid pass rush and some talent in the secondary, they’re capable of giving opposing quarterbacks trouble. However, unless they can create some takeaways, they rarely get much support from the offense.
At home, the Bills are at least capable of playing a competitive game against a good team. But that goes out the window with Peterman starting. He’s a turnover waiting to happen, and the Bills are borderline hopeless if they don’t win the turnover battle. Bet on the Bears -10 to win and cover against the Bills.