Monday Night Football Week 8 Predictions - Minnesota Vikings vs Chicago Bears

Minnesota Vikings fans posing for picture

Joe Gavazzi

Monday, October 31, 2016 5:16 PM GMT

NFC-North division rivals, the Minnesota Vikings, and Chicago Bears, meet in the Windy City for this Halloween Night Showdown. This is an MNF Marquee Matchup which the Bears will play as their “Super Bowl” and that is reflected on the NFL odds.

 

Minnesota Vikings vs Chicago Bears

We all know that the Vikings have had an incredible ATS run under HC Zimmer (at 29-10 ATS).  Yet, because they are not a glitzy team, the public has been slow to back them on a regular basis.  Such is the case tonight, as the public was less than enamored with their 21-10 loss at Philly last week. Despite the fact, they may suffer “unbeaten letdown,” I still favor them in this spot on MNF.

The Chicago Bears showed hope when QB Hoyer replaced QB Cutler (out 5 weeks with an injured thumb) early in the season. His consistent 300 PY games gave a boost to a lethargic Chicago running game. Last week, Hoyer injured his arm, paving the way for Cutler (thumb) to return for the first time in 6 games. We are eager to play against him, knowing that in Cutler’s 67 home starts, the Bears have covered only 35% of the time. Chicago is on a 2-9 ATS slide overall and is 2-11 ATS at home.  

Last week, in their 26-10 loss at Green Bay, they were never in the ball game, being outgained 406-189. Their running profile is “upside down.” They rush an average of only 21 times per game for 87 yards and allow opponents to rush 27 times per game for 107 yards. Note the dichotomy to the rushing stats of the Vikings, who rush 29 times per game and allow opponents to rush only 22 times per game.  Huge edge to Minnesota, when we consider the fact that any NFL team who rushed the ball 30 or more times in a game, while their opponent does not, covers the spread 85% of the time.  As a corollary, we note that any NFL team, who allows their foe to rush 22 or fewer times in a game, while they do not have a long-term 86% ATS winning history.  

I continue my statistical support of the Vikings by noting their superior defense, vis a vis the Chicago Bears.  Minnesota allows just 14/280 per game, while the Bears allow 24/350.  This means we have the better running game and better defense, the 2 key statistical elements in handicapping a football game.  Last week, in their 21-10 loss to the Eagles, the Vikings won the yardage battle 282-239.  I love playing on teams the week after they won the yards but lost the game!  A very unusual 4 TOs committed by Minnesota last week was the main reason for their demise.  A negative in this handicap is the potential unbeaten letdown that the Vikings may face.  NFL road favorites have a negative situational record of 29% in this scenario.  But with this game on MNF against a division rival, I will back the far more fundamentally sound Minnesota team and their long history of point spread success.  Under Zimmer, they are still 29-10 ATS, including 27-6 ATS and 19-4 ATS most recently.  This includes 10-2 ATS in the recent role of favorite.

 

Final Analysis

Without the weight of the overwhelming public support and with fundamental, situational, statistical and technical support, we play the Minnesota Vikings tonight on MNF.  I invite you to put the odds in your favor and join me in my free NFL pick for the Minnesota Vikings in this MNF Halloween Thriller

 Free NFL Pick: Vikings -4Best Line Offered: at Bookmaker

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