(8-9, 8-9 ATS)
(11-5, 9-6-1 ATS)
Way back in Week 6, the Chicago Bears thought that they had a very easy fixture against the Seattle Seahawks in NFL betting action here at Soldier Field. They lost that game by a field goal, but little did they know that they would get a chance at redemption in the second round of the NFL playoffs in January.
Seattle pulled off the shocker of all shockers against the defending Super Bowl champs, the New Orleans Saints last week, but let’s face the fact right now that it took an absolutely perfect game to do it. RB Marshawn Lynch probably isn’t going to have an electrifying 60+ yard TD run in this game once again, nor will QB Matt Hasselbeck likely throw for four TD passes after having just 12 in the regular season. One thing that we do know is that this defense had better not give up over 400 yards on the day to Chicago like it did to New Orleans, or the Seahawks are in big, big trouble. In order for there to be an upset in the cards this week, Head Coach Pete Carroll needs to continue to make his team believe. Not only was Seattle a double digit underdog for the majority of last week, but it fell behind both 10-0 and 17-7 early on against the Saints and could have easily just curled into a ball and died. The good news is that this team just continued, and needs to continue to show fight and to prove that it belongs amongst the NFC’s elite.
The Bears were given a tremendous gift in Wild Card weekend, as they couldn’t have drawn their path up to Super Bowl XLV any better. Sure, they know that they are probably going to have to go up against the Atlanta Falcons next week, but the fact that the No. 1 seed in the conference was stuck with arguably the most difficult foe possible in the playoffs, while they are dealing with the easiest team in the playoffs has to make the Bears fans thrilled. What won’t thrill them though, is if their offense doesn’t kick it up a notch in this one. If not for WR Devin Hester’s punt return for a TD with less than two minutes to play, Chicago wouldn’t have even gotten to double digits against a lowly Seattle defense earlier this year. QB Jay Cutler didn’t throw nearly as many INTs this season as he did last year, but he did only have 3,274 yards and 23 TDs in 2010. If the Bears are winning the Super Bowl this year, it is clear that LB Brian Urlacher and company are going to need to be at their best. This unit allowed just 17.9 points and 314.3 yards per game this year.
Seattle came through with the upset last week, and though we tend to think that it is going to bow out in this one, it can stay in front of this number. The Bears just don’t have the ability to beat anyone right now by double digits more often than not, and we’ll be in on the ground floor on the Seahawks this weekend.
NFL Free Pick: Seattle Seahawks +10