Chicago Bears (3-9) at Detroit Lions (8-4)
The Lions are 8-4, but rank 22nd in first down rate differential. They’ve allowed 8 more first downs than they’ve gained and 3 more touchdowns than they’ve scored. Their 15-point win in New Orleans last week was easily their most impressive game of the season, but their other seven wins all came by a touchdown or less and all required 4th quarter comebacks. That’s relevant considering the Lions are favored by 7.5 points here as home against the Bears.
The Bears are one of the weaker teams in the NFL thanks to injuries and suspensions, as they’re missing their top two quarterbacks (Jay Cutler and Brian Hoyer), their top-4 pass catchers (Alshon Jeffery, Kevin White, Zach Miller, and Eddie Royal), their best offensive lineman (Kyle Long), and three of their best defensive players (middle linebackers Danny Trevathan and Jerrell Freeman and cornerback Kyle Fuller). However, they’re still fighting, keeping it close with Tennessee two weeks ago and winning straight up by 20 as home underdogs against the 49ers last week. There’s not enough here for me to put money on it, but I like the Bears’ chances of keeping this within a touchdown.
Detroit Lions 23 Chicago Bears 17
Pick against the spread: Chicago +7.5