NFL Week 17 odds: Chicago at Detroit
The Bears remain in the mix for a playoff berth. Chicago can advance to the postseason with a win on Sunday combined with a Minnesota loss to Green Bay. “All we can do is control what we can control,” says Bears wide receiver Brandon Marshall, who has set team records with 113 catches and 1,466 yards. “We do need help. If we could get that help, that would be good.”
Chicago kept its hopes alive with a 28-13 win at Arizona. Zack Bowman recovered a fumble in the end zone and Charles Tillman recorded his third interception return for a touchdown this season, as the Bears dominated the Cardinals to halt a three-game skid. Jay Cutler finished with 146 yards passing for Chicago and tossed a touchdown to Brandon Marshall, who caught six passes for 68 yards on the day. Matt Forte rushed for 88 yards and a score on 12 carries, but left the contest in the third quarter with an ankle injury and did not return. He’s iffy for this week.
The Lions lost 31-18 to Atlanta. Detroit wideout Calvin Johnson entered the record books, breaking Jerry Rice’s mark for most receiving yards in a season in NFL history. But as has been the case for most of the season, his stellar performance came in yet another loss. Johnson made 11 grabs for 225 yards, upping his season total to 1,892. Rice had 1,848 yards in 1995 with San Francisco. It wasn’t the only NFL record the player known as “Megatron” broke as he became the first player to record at least 100 receiving yards in eight straight games. Johnson surpassed a mark set by Charley Hennigan in 1961 and matched by Michael Irvin in 1995. Matthew Stafford completed 37-of-56 passes for 443 yards with one interception for the Lions (4-11), who have lost seven in a row.
The Lions have been inconsistent stopping the run and gave up 171 rushing yards to the Bears in Week 7. The Chicago offense is built around Forte, and is capable of consistently moving the chains. Armando Allen is an excellent change-of-pace alongside Forte, showing quickness and wiggle in space. With the Bears’ offensive line struggling in recent weeks, look for Detroit defensive coordinator Gunther Cunningham to concentrate on derailing Forte and Allen with a good dose of interior stunts and zone run blitzes to force Cutler to move the chains.
Chicago beat Detroit 13-7 on Oct. 22 and has won eight of nine in the series.
WAGERWEB.COM OPENING ODDS: Bears -3 (44.5) Check our current lines.
BEARS NOTES: With Chi., QB JAY CUTLER is 6-1 vs. Det. with 11 TDs, 1 INT & 101.2 rating. Incl. playoffs, when he has 100+ rating, his teams are 26-1. Has 2,776 pass yards & needs 224 to be 1st Bears QB with 3 3,000-yard seasons … RB MATT FORTÉ has 991 rush yards & 319 rec. yards for 1,310 scrimmage yards, his 5th 1,000-yard season. Has rushed for 100+ yards or TD in all 4 games at Det. … WR BRANDON MARSHALL has team-record 113 catches & 1,466 yards. Has 97 catches for 1,252 yards (104.3 per game) & 10 TDs in past 12. In career vs. Det., WR-PR DEVIN HESTER has TD via KR (97 yards), PR (82) & rec. (12)…Defense has 8 INT-TDs, tied for 2nd most in season in NFL history. CB CHARLES TILLMAN had INT-TD last week & ties for NFL lead with 3 INT-TDs. Leads NFL with 10 FFs. Since entering NFL in 2003, Tillman has 38 FFs, most by DB. Had 2 FFs in last meeting. Is only player with 30+ INTs (33) & 30+ FFs in that span. CB TIM JENNINGS leads NFL with career-high 8 INTs. DE JULIUS PEPPERS has 11 sacks & 5 FFs in 9 games vs. Det. CB ZACK BOWMAN had FR-TD last week.
LIONS NOTES: QB MATTHEW STAFFORD has 4,695 pass yards & needs 305 to record back-to-back 5,000-yard seasons. In past 8 at home, has 2,862 pass yards (357.8 per game) … RB MIKEL LESHOURE has 8 rush TDs in past 8. Has rush TD in 5 of past 6 … WR CALVIN JOHNSON (1,892) passed HOFer JERRY RICE (1,848 in 1995) for most rec. yards in season. Needs 108 yards for 1st 2,000-yard season in NFL history. Is 1st player in NFL history with 1,600+ rec. yards in consecutive seasons. Has 100+ rec. yards in 8 games in row, longest streak in NFL history. Has 11 100-yard games, tied for most in season with HOFer MICHAEL IRVIN. In past 8, has 76 catches for 1,254 yards (156.8 per game) & 4 TDs. Since 2011, has NFL-best 3,573 rec. yards & 115.3 yards per game. Since 2008, has 50 rec. TDs, most in NFL. Aims for 4th in row at home vs. Chi. with TD … DE CLIFF AVRIL has 5 sacks & 2 FFs in past 6. Has sack in 4 of past 6. Is 1 of 2 in NFL with 20+ sacks (20.5) & 8+ FFs (8) since 2011 (VON MILLER).
WAGERWEB.COM TRENDS: Bears are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games following a S.U. win. Bears are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 vs. NFC North. Bears are 1-5 ATS in their last 6 games in December. Bears are 0-4 ATS in their last 4 games after allowing less than 15 points in their previous game. Lions are 1-8 ATS in their last 9 vs. NFC North. Lions are 0-4 ATS in their last 4 games following a S.U. loss. Lions are 0-9 ATS in their last 9 games after allowing more than 30 points in their previous game. Lions are 0-4 ATS in their last 4 games in December. Lions are 0-4 ATS in their last 4 games overall.