2012 Chicago Bears Betting Preview
After hosting the NFC championship game two seasons ago the Chicago Bears looked like they were on their way back to the playoffs last year, winning seven of their first 10 games. But then the injury bug took a bite out of their starting QB and do-everything RB, and Chicago lost five in a row to fall out of contention.
This year, with Jay Cutler and Matt Forte healthy and ready to go, hopes are very high in Bear-land because they also made some off-season noise by bringing in a top-notch receiver and another quality back. And with Green Bay and Detroit expected to suck up most of the attention in the NFC North, the Bears have a chance to do a little under-the-radar damage.
Last Season in Review
Chicago started just 2-3 last year, then won five in a row, beating the Eagles, Lions and Chargers along the way, to get to 7-3. But Cutler broke a thumb, of all things, making a tackle in the win over San Diego, and was lost for the season. A couple of weeks later Forte, who was leading the league in yards from scrimmage, went down and out for the year with a sprained knee. The Bears lost five in a row, as the offense averaged less than 14 PPG, and ended up finishing at a very disappointing 8-8.
Playing a third of the season without their starting quarterback and four games without Forte the Bears ranked 24th in offense last year at 314 YPG, but ninth in rushing at 126 YPG. Actually, even with Forte missing that time, Chicago had its best season running the ball since 2005.
Defensively the Bears ranked 17th in allowing 350 YPG but fifth vs. the run at 96 YPG.
So overall Chicago ranked 26th in total yardage at -36 YPG, but sixth in total rushing at +30 YPG.
Around the league last year teams that outrushed their opponents covered the spread 69 percent of the time, but Chicago could only go 8-8 ATS.
Also, as Bears games averaged 43 points, they went 9-7 on the totals.
In the 10 games Cutler started last year Chicago averaged almost 27 PPG; in the six games he missed they averaged 14 PPG.
The Bears pulled off what could be the coup of the off-season in trading a couple of draft picks for WR Brandon Marshall, who when teamed with Cutler at Denver a few years ago helped form a very dangerous combination.
The Bears also tried to help out Forte in the backfield by signing RB Michael Bush.
At the draft Chicago used its first nfl pick, No. 19 overall, to grab Boise State DE Shea McClellin, and the 45th pick to take South Carolina WR Alshon Jeffrey, who was an All-American as a sophomore.
Finally, in a move they’re probably wishing they’d pulled last year, the Bears upgraded the back-up QB spot by signing Jason Campbell, a guy with 70 career NFL starts.
2012 Bears Schedule
Chicago will play the 11th-easiest schedule in the league this season, based on last year’s W/L records. The Bears only have six games against teams that made the playoffs last year, but also road games at Dallas and at Tennessee. They get their trip to Green Bay out of the way in Week 2, play at San Francisco on a Monday night in November, and while three out of their last four games are on the road, all are winnable, vs. the Vikings, Cardinals and Lions. All-in-all, Chicago has a very manageable schedule this season.
2012 Chicago Bears Betting Odds and Prediction
Da Bears are getting +350 at Bovada to win the NFC North this season, 9/1 to win the NFC and 16/1 to win the Super Bowl. They’ve also been tagged at Bookmaker with a regular-season wins ‘over/under’ of nine (O -145/U +115).
Chicago had something going last year, until the injuries hit, so with the addition of Marshall we’re on the Bears bandwagon this season. We rate Chicago as our longer-shot choice to win the NFC, and we like the ‘over’ nine on Bears wins.
Cole started off as a part time handicapper and a full time computer programmer. After developing a computer program that consistently provided winners in NFL, NBA, MLB, and college sports Cole went into full time handicapping. The computer program and his knack for winners made him a rising star in the handicapping world. His complex computer program based on algorithms and analytical calculations have led to a 60% ATS rate.