Sat, Sep 28, 2:49pm by Ed Scimia
Kickoff: 3:00am AEST, Monday, 30th September 2013
Location: Ford Field in Detroit, Michigan
Best NFL Betting Site: www.IASbet.com
If you’re looking for a meaningful early season game to watch this week, look no further than the clash between the 3-0 Chicago Bears and the 2-1 Detroit Lions. This game could help define what the NFC North divisional race looks like heading into the middle portion of the season, especially if the Bears can win their fourth straight game and open up a two game lead on the field.
But this won’t be an easy game for the Bears, especially on the road in Detroit. The Lions are returning home after splitting a couple of close decisions on the road, first losing to the Arizona Cardinals by four before rebounding to beat the Washington Redskins by a touchdown last week. Matthew Stafford and wide receiver Calvin “Megatron” Johnson have played up to form, and while Reggie Bush will be welcomed in his return to the backfield, the Lions also found out that they had a second legitimate running back in Joique Bell, who filled in admirably last week.
Of course, the Bears have plenty of weapons of their own, and despite not traditionally being seen as a high-scoring team, they’ve actually outscored the Lions so far this season. Matt Forte has continued to be a premier running back, and while Jay Cutler may still have his critics, he’s been solid so far this year.
Both teams are coming in relatively healthy, with the Lions getting several players back this week to counteract the loss of wide receiver Nate Burleson (who suffered a broken arm after a car crash earlier this week), which seems to be setting us up for a classic battle between these two old rivals. Both defences are solid, if not spectacular (the Bears have some questions on their defensive line, while the Lions love the play – but not the unpredictability – of Ndamukong Suh), and it’s really hard to find much between these two teams.
The Lions have been installed as a slight favourite by three points at home, which is yet another sign that these teams are essentially considered equals. In a game that could easily go either way, however, I’m going to take Chicago and the points. There are two reasons for this. First, this game does look like a toss-up to me, so there’s no reason not to take the underdog and get three points – a number that could secure us a win or a push if the Lions pull out a narrow win.
Secondly, I also see the Bears as the more consistent of the two teams in this matchup. The Lions do have a couple questions on offense (will the loss of Burleson hurt them? How much will Bush contribute this week?), while Chicago has just rolled along without any major problems. I actually think the Bears will win this one outright in a close game, but I feel much more comfortable playing the point spread, as this is a game that could easily turn on a single play.
Prediction: Chicago 27, Detroit 24
Picks: Chicago +3 (1.92), Over 47 with IASbet.com
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