This could be the final year in Chicago for Jay Cutler unless he elevates his game, so can the quarterback do so and help the Bears improve on their 5-11 mark in 2014?
The 2015 NFL season is set to kick off Thursday night, September 10th, but before we get to Kickoff Weekend, we will be here presenting advance daily team profiles in an attempt to assist you with your NFL picks early on. Today we are profiling the Chicago Bears, who finished 5-11 in 2014 and in fourth place in the NFC North.
To get us started, here is a summary of the Chicago betting statistics over the past five seasons. Please take note all of these statistics are for regular season games only.
Chicago Bears Betting Stats, 2010 through 2014
|Over – Under||21-19||24-16||45-35|
|Avg. Total Score||44.5||46.8||45.6|
The Bears have been overvalued when playing at home over the last five years, as evidenced by going just 39.5 percent ATS at Soldier Field. The main culprit had been a terrible defense in recent years for a franchise that used to pride itself on its defense, and that shoddy stop-unit has made Chicago a good ‘over’ team at 56.3 percent including 60.0 percent on the road.
Key Trend: Chicago is 5-15, 25.0 percent ATS as a conference underdog when coming off of an ‘over’.
Next, we take a look at the Bears’ statistical summary for the 2014 season.
2014 Chicago Bears Team Statistics (Per Game)
|Offense||Off. Rank||Defense||Def. Rank|
|Yds. Per Rush||4.1||18th||4.3||21st|
|Yds Per Pass||6.2||28th||7.7||31st|
|Yds. Per Play||5.4||22nd||6.2||30th|
Now there was a lot wrong with the Bears on both sides of the ball during their 5-11 season last year, but the feud between quarterback Jay Cutler and former coach Marc Trestman did not help matters, as Cutler was benched toward the end of the season with Jimmy Clausen starting vs. Detroit. As is typical with losing teams, it was Trestman that was fired while Cutler, considered by many to be a cancer in the clubhouse, remains, albeit probably on his last leash.
Now, let us take a peek at various Chicago Future Odds for this 2015 season from several sportsbooks. You can view these and other future and prop odds on the Sportsbook Review Futures and Prop Bets Directory.
2015 Chicago Bears NFL Futures
|Super Bowl Odds||+11000||+8000||+5000||+10500|
|NFC Conf. Odds||+3800||+4200||+2800||+3700|
|NFC North Odds||+1550||+1850||+1200||+1500|
|Win Total||7 un-162||7 un-175||7 un-150||7 un-170|
On the surface it would appear that the sportsbooks expect a two-win improvement by the Bears with their win total set at 7, but note how heavily the ‘under’ is juiced across the board, indicating that only six wins seems more likely. Chicago is certainly projected to repeat its last place finish of last season, easily owning the longest odds to win the NFC North this year.
Chicago Bears Key Additions
The Bears may be stuck with Cutler for one more year, but they did make some veteran additions in the forms of running back Jacquizz Rodgers and wide receiver Eddie Royal on offense, as well as adding rush linebacker Pernell McPhee and safety Antrel Rolle to a defense that is transitioning to a 3-4 this season. They also drafted a nose tackle comfortable in the 3-4 in Eddie Goldman in the second round.
Note that the Beas drafted a big-play receiver in Kevin White with their first pick, but it is now possible he could miss the season after suffering a stress fracture in his lower shin.
Chicago Bears Key Losses
Besides changing coaches off the field, Chicago departures on the field included wide receiver Brandon Marshall, defensive tackles Ray McDonald, and Stephen Paea, linebackers Lance Briggs and D.J. Williams and cornerbacks Charles Tillman, Chris Conte and Danny McCray.