Sunday afternoon features a matchup of NFC North versus AFC North as the Chicago Bears (1-1) take on the Cleveland Browns (1-1). The Browns will host this one at FirstEnergy Stadium, with kickoff scheduled for 1:00 pm ET.
The Chicago Bears picked up their first win of the season last week with a 20-17 win over the Cincinnati Bengals. The Bears’ defense played the biggest impact in this game as they had five sacks and three interceptions in the victory.
Cleveland also picked up its first win last week with a 31-21 win over the Houston Texans. Baker Mayfield threw for 213 yards and a score, while Nick Chubb rushed for 95 yards and a score of his own.
The Browns are the heavy favorites in this one playing at home. They are -360 to win while the Bears’ moneyline sits at +290. The spread features Chicago +7.5 (-110), and the over/under for total points is 44.5.
The Bears are tied for the second-best odds to win the NFC North at +450. The Browns are +125 to win a loaded AFC North.
In terms of the Super Bowl, the Browns have the sixth-best odds to win it all at +1500. The Bears are +7000 to win Super Bowl LVI.
By The Numbers
Chicago is 4-9 overall in their last 13 games; however, they are 5-1 in their last six games against Cleveland. Chicago is also 4-1 against the spread in their last five games against the Browns.
Cleveland is 13-6 in their last 19 games overall, but they are just 1-5 against the spread in their last six games at FirstEnergy Field. Against the NFC North, Cleveland is actually 0-7 in their last seven games.
Bears’ Rookie Gets Nod Under Center
Thanks to an Andy Dalton knee injury, Justin Fields will be getting the first start of his young career. The interesting thing for the Bears is whether the rookie will become the permanent starter if he shows he can handle the job on Sunday.
After taking over for Dalton last week, Fields threw for 60 yards and an interception. He also rushed ten times for 31 yards.
On the ground, David Montgomery leads the way for the Bears with 169 yards and a touchdown. Don’t be surprised if they turn to Montgomery early and often in this one to protect Fields against the Browns’ pass rush.
Defensively, the Bears rank 19th in scoring defense (25.5 points allowed per game) and eighth in total yards allowed (317 per game).
Browns To Lean On Dynamic Running Duo
With an MCL injury to Jarvis Landry and Odell Beckham Jr.’s return still up in the air, don’t be surprised if the Browns rely heavily on the two-headed monster of Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt this Sunday.
Through two games, Chubb has rushed for 178 yards on 26 attempts (6.8 yards per carry) and three touchdowns. Kareem Hunt has also been dynamic with 84 yards and a touchdown on the ground.
Defensively, the Browns are currently led by Mack Wilson with 11 tackles, a trio of defenders with a sack each, and Malcolm Smith with an interception.
Taking The Bears And The Points
Sunday could be the start of a new era in Chicago’s storied history as Justin Fields takes over as a starter. If the Bears are to win, though, they are going to need their defense to perform at the level they did last week.
They will definitely have a tougher matchup taking on the Browns in Cleveland. Still, this is a game that Chicago is capable of keeping close.
For that reason, take Chicago and the 7.5 points.