Week 6 odds for the NFL feature an NFC North battle between the Minnesota Vikings and Chicago Bears. Both teams are off to an ugly 1-4 start to the season but Chicago just pulled off its first win after hammering Washington by 20 points.
Meanwhile, Minnesota is coming off a defeat against Kansas City, but the team's biggest loss was seeing superstar receiver Justin Jefferson go down with a hamstring injury.
Vikings vs Bears odds
Vikings vs Bears predictions
Justin Jefferson is the reigning NFL Offensive Player of the Year and is a huge part of Minnesota's offense that won't be replaced. However, I'm still wary of fading the Minnesota Vikings since even without Jefferson they might move the chains against a Chicago Bears defense that is second-last in the NFL in EPA.
That said, Minnesota isn't great on that side of the ball either, ranking 21st in defensive EPA and 25th in defensive dropback EPA. That should mean some success on offense for a Chicago side that is averaging 34 points and 461 yards per game over the last two weeks.
After looking like one of the worst QBs in the league through the first three weeks of the year, Justin Fields has shined over the last two games. He completed 80% of his passes for 335 yards and four touchdowns against the Broncos in Week 4 before throwing for 282 yards and another four scores last week (while adding 57 yards on the ground).
Fields has benefitted from the presence of DJ Moore who has hauled in 16 passes for 361 yards over the last two games. The Bears do have some concerns at running back after losing starter Khalil Herbert to an ankle injury and backup Roschon Johnson to a concussion in Week 5.
Even if Johnson doesn't pass concussion protocol I have faith in third-string RB D'Onta Foreman. The veteran has just three carries with his new team but last season he broke the 100-yard mark five times when called upon to start for Carolina.
Like most young QBs (especially those playing behind shaky lines), Fields struggles under pressure. However, the Vikings are second-last in the NFL with a pressure rate of just 14.4% and Fields has a completion percentage of 70.2% while posting an offensive grade of 76.9 when kept clean according to PFF. Expect Fields to put together another solid performance and take the Over 20.5 on Chicago's team total.
My best bet: Bears team total Over 21.5 (-105 at DraftKings)
Picks made at time of writing may not reflect live odds.
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Vikings vs Bears same-game parlay
Bears team total Over 20.5 points
Kirk Cousins Under 248.5 passing yards
Alexander Mattison Over 52.5 rushing yards
Cousins tends to struggle when playing outdoors on the road and with high winds in the forecast for Sunday he should go well below his passing yards prop. The absence of Jefferson also increases that likelyhood along with the fact that Bears could have three starters returning to secondary.
Mattison had just eight carries for 26 yards last week but he rushed for more than 90 yards in back-to-back contests in Weeks 3 and 4.
The Vikes added Cam Akers prior to Week 4 but Mattison continues to get the lion's share of the rush attempts and should be able to eclipse this low number especially if the wind hinders Minnesota's aerial attack.
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Vikings vs Bears spread and Over/Under analysis
The lookahead line for this contest had the Vikings as 4.5-point favorites but after it became clear that Jefferson was headed to the IL, this spread opened at Minnesota -3. It has bounced around this key number with most books currently pricing the Vikings at -2.5 as of Tuesday afternoon before moving back up to -3 by Friday.
The total has plunged from the opening number of 48.5 to 44 which is partially a reflection of how much Jefferson means to this Minnesota offense but is also due to the weather we're expecting on Sunday with winds projected to be at 20 mph.
The Vikings have been making a habit out of playing close contest and while they went an absurd 11-0 in one-possession games last year, they are just 0-4 in those situations this season. They lost 27-20 to the Chiefs last week and their only victory this year has been against the 0-5 Panthers.
Carolina seems to be the worst team in the league now but that was what Chicago looked like after beginning the season with three straight double-digit losses. The Bears hit a low point with a 41-10 loss to the Chiefs in Week 3 when they trailed by 34 points at halftime. However, they played better the following week in a 31-28 loss to the Broncos before getting in the win column with a 40-20 road upset against the Commanders last week.
Vikings vs Bears betting trend to know
The Over has cashed in all five of Chicago's games this season. Find more NFL betting trends for Vikings vs. Bears.
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Vikings vs Bears game info
|Soldier Field, Chicago, IL
|Sunday, October 15, 2023
|1:00 p.m. ET
|Bears +3.5, 49
Vikings vs Bears latest injuries
Vikings vs Bears weather
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