Minnesota Vikings vs. Chicago Bears Betting Odds Preview - NFL Week 12

This weekend’s game between Minnesota and Chicago will be critical for Minnesota to win and equally critical for Chicago to win. Right now Chicago is tied for 1st in the NFC North with Green Bay (7-3). Minnesota is the next best team in the NFC North possessing a 6-4 record. Chicago has already lost one game to Green Bay, they play Minnesota this week and again in two weeks, and they will play Green Bay once more in four weeks. Minnesota has yet to play the Bears or the Packers this season, therefore including this week, of the last 6 games the Vikings have 4 games against their division leaders; and they also have to play Houston in 5 weeks.

Minnesota will be coming off a bye week and should be rested and prepared for the Bears. The Bears just got back from a beat down courtesy of the 49ers on Monday Night Football last week. The big question for the Bears is who will play QB this week. Reports are that Jay Cutler has been cleared from his concussion to limited practice. QB Jason Campbell was injured last week against the 49ers and his rib injury would have also put him on limited practice if the Bears had practiced this Wednesday.

The bright side for Chicago may be that their defense is a good match to defend against the Vikings’ run attack. The Vikings are ranked 3rd in the league for average run yardage per game behind Adrian Peterson who has run for 1128 yards this season and 7 TDs on 195 rushing attempts. Minnesota averages 151 yards rushing per game. Chicago’s run defense is ranked 10th in the league and allows an average of 95 yards rushing per game.

Fortunately for Chicago, even if Cutler cannot start, both teams allow many more yards on the pass than the other team averages per game. The passing game for both teams is safe. Minnesota allows an average of 112 yards rushing per game and Chicago rushes for an average of 123 yards per game so Chicago’s run game is probably also safe.

Despite lower offensive yardage production the Bears score 1 more point on average than the Vikings. The Bears score about 25 points per game and the Vikings about 24 points. Minnesota gives up 22.1 points per game on average and Chicago is much tighter at 16.5 points. Chicago held Houston to 13 points two weeks ago and Houston has a decent run game but a much better pass game than Minnesota.

Chicago has not scored more than 7 points without Cutler so a conservative score without Cutler when playing in Chicago would be a 16-7 victory for Minnesota assuming the Bears offense will not be able to stay on the field for long. With Cutler, but not a Cutler who is at full strength, the game could be a higher score, perhaps 16-14, but still a victory for Minnesota. Without seeing the Bears offense back on track and able to move the ball it is hard to expect them to win.

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