Nov 122016

Chicago Bears (2-6) at Tampa Bay Buccaneers (3-5)

The Bears are just 2-6, but things are not that bad for them right now. Despite a rash of injuries, the Bears were better than their record suggested in the first 8 games of the season and enter this game 20th in first down rate differential. They also enter this game as healthy as they’ve been all season coming off of their bye, with nose tackle Eddie Goldman, left guard Josh Sitton, and right guard Kyle Long, 3 key trench players, all returning this week. Prior to the bye, the Bears got back players like middle linebacker Danny Trevathan, outside linebacker Pernell McPhee, and quarterback Jay Cutler back from injury. With the players they currently have healthy, the Bears are not a bad team.

The Buccaneers, meanwhile, are not as good. They enter this game just 27th in first down rate differential, despite not having as many injuries as the Bears. They’ve also lacked any sort of homefield advantage in recent years, going just 18-39 ATS at home since 2009. The problem is this line is at 2.5 in favor of the visiting Bears, so we’re not really getting any line value with them. They’re still the right side here in pick ‘em pools as long as the line is under 3, but this is a no confidence pick.

Chicago Bears 23 Tampa Bay Buccaneers 20

Pick against the spread: Chicago -2.5

Confidence: None

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