Chicago Bears (1-3 SU, 1-3 ATS) vs. Indianapolis Colts (1-3 SU, 1-3 ATS)
NFL Week 5
Date/Time: Sunday, October 9, 2016 at 1:00PM EST
Where: Lucas Oil Stadium
TV: FOX, DTV: 711
by Chad Holloway, Expert Football Handicapper, Predictem.com
Point Spread: CHI +4/IND -4
Over/Under Total: 48
What a pleasant surprise last week from the Chicago Bears, who got their first win at home against the division rivals Detroit Lions. It not only put an end to the Lionsí six-game winning streak against the Bears, it also ended the Bearsí six-game home losing streak. Eddie Royal came up big with seven catches for 111 yards and a touchdown, while Jordan Howard, who was in for the injured Jeremy Langford, killed it rushing for 111 yards on 23 attempts.
The Bears offense is currently ranked 24th in the league averaging 335 total yards per game (YPG). Their passing game is decent enough averaging 252.8 YPG, which ranks them 15th, but they need to continue improving upon their run game, which is ranked 26th averaging 82.2 YPG.
Defensively, the Bears are holding strong and are currently 10th in the NFL holding opponents to an average of 333.5 total YPG (210 passing YPG; 123.5 rushing YPG) and 24.2 points per game (PPG). Meanwhile, their opponents this week, the Indianapolis Colts, donít hold a candle defensively. Theyíre ranked 24th in the league allowing an average of 382.8 total YPG (277 passing YPG; 105.8 rushing YPG) and 31.2 PPG.
Offensively, the Colts averaging 349.2 total YPG, which puts them 17th in the league. Their passing game, which ranks 13th with an average of 261.2 YPG, is decent enough, but like the Bears their run game is spinning its wheels averaging 88 YPG. That puts them 24th in the league.
The Colts are coming off a 27-30 loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars in a game played inside Londonís famed Wembley Stadium. The Colts nearly rallied back to win, but came up short due in no small part to dropped passes and unnecessary penalties.
Chad Holloway's Pick to Cover the Point Spread: Did you know the Bears have a three-game win streak against the Colts dating back to 2008? Not only that, theyíve won handily 29-13, 41-21, and most recently 23-11 in 2015. I donít think itís going to be quite so easy in Week 5, but I do like Bears at +4.
Without Langford and quarterback Jay Cutler, who has been sidelined since Week 2 with a thumb injury, the Bears are a different team. Itís still too early to really know what Howard and relief QB Brian Hoyer can do for the team, but last weekís performance was inspiring. Did you know that Hoyer, an eight-year veteran, has completed 69.1 percent of his passes for 697 yards, four touchdowns and zero interceptions? Itís true and that is impressive.
I think the Colts will continue to struggle against the Bearsí tough defense, who will in turn take some of the pressure off their own offense. That said, Hoyer and company will need to find ways to put more points on the board as theyíre only averaging 15.5 PPG. With that +4 cushion, I like the Bears on the road, though I donít think theyíll top the o/u.
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