Vikings vs. Bears Line, Odds, and Predictions: Experts Favor Chicago to Upset Minnesota
The Chicago Bears aim to continue their winning momentum against the Minnesota Vikings, who are favored to win.
The Chicago Bears are looking to maintain their momentum after ending their long losing streak as they face off against the Minnesota Vikings, who are also desperate for a turnaround. Both teams have a 1-4 record, but the Vikings are slightly favored as they hit the road.
The NFC North rivals will meet at Soldier Field on Sunday at 1 p.m. ET, with the game being broadcast on FOX.
The Bears put an emphatic end to their franchise-record 14-game losing streak with a convincing 40-20 victory over the Washington Commanders last Thursday. On the other hand, the Vikings suffered a 27-20 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday. While Minnesota has been competitive in every game so far, they have struggled to close out victories. Coach Kevin O'Connell's team has a 1-4 record in games decided by one score, a significant drop from their perfect 11-0 record in such games last season.
Adding to the Vikings' challenges, they received some devastating injury news this week. All-Pro wide receiver Justin Jefferson has been placed on injured reserve after sustaining a hamstring injury early in the fourth quarter of last week's game. Jefferson currently ranks third in the NFL with 571 receiving yards. This absence is a major advantage for the Bears' defense, which currently ranks 31st in the league against the pass.
Without Jefferson, Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins will rely heavily on first-round pick Jordan Addison, as well as wide receiver K.J. Osborn and tight end T.J. Hockenson. Cousins leads the league with 13 touchdown passes and is second in passing yards with 1,498. However, he has also committed seven turnovers, including costly interceptions in the red zone. The Vikings' running game has also struggled, with Alexander Mattison averaging less than 60 rushing yards per game and the team failing to score a rushing touchdown.
On the other side of the field, Bears quarterback Justin Fields is currently playing at his best. In the last two games, he has thrown eight touchdown passes with only one interception. However, pass protection continues to be a concern, as Fields has been sacked at least three times in every game.
Fields has yet to make a significant impact with his legs. The Bears' ground game is uncertain moving forward, with leading rusher Khalil Herbert expected to miss several games due to an ankle injury and rookie Roschon Johnson dealing with a concussion. In addition to the running game, turnovers could play a crucial role in this matchup. The Vikings have the worst turnover differential in the league at minus-9, while the Bears also have a negative turnover differential at minus-4.
With one losing streak finally behind them, the Bears have an opportunity to end their nine-game skid at home. The Vikings, who have won their last four matchups against the Bears, need to maintain their success to avoid a lost season as the reigning NFC North champions.