It’s a great Monday night matchup as the (5-1) Chicago Bears head to LA’s SoFi Stadium to take on the (4-2) Los Angeles Rams (8.15pm ET today; TV: Live on ESPN).
With playoff implications on the line, which team will emerge the victor in our last of the week seven contests? Read on for the answer to that question and our Bears vs LA Rams predictions and betting picks for this preview.
Contenders or Pretenders?
Even before the Bears made a quarterback change, despite being undefeated at the time, Chicago had been having their best season in years. Yet, in a division with the Green Bay Packers, the Bears still found themselves outside of the first position in the NFC North. That all changed last week however as the Packers lost and the Bears won, allowing Chicago to take over the top spot in the division.
The Bears have found success all season long, losing just one game, a week four meeting with the Indianapolis Colts. Other than that, Chicago has breezed through the year with victories over the .500 or better teams such as the Detroit Lions and Tampa Bay Buccaneers, as well as wins over the Carolina Panthers, New York Giants and Atlanta Falcons. Now granted, two of those teams have a combined two wins, which might imply the Bears aren’t as good as they look and perhaps that is the case. Because in addition to not facing the hardest of opponents, the Bears have also found themselves beneficiaries of no shortage of good luck this year.
Tonight, Chicago will have a chance to prove they are for real as they take on the LA Rams, who have also looked quite impressive on the year despite facing their own questions about being legitimate contenders.
On Thursday night, the NFL world was treated to the divisional battle of the NFC East aka the NFC Least when the one-win Giants took on the one-win Philadelphia Eagles with first place on the line. Heading from the first game of week seven to the last, there is such a juxtaposition. Because if the Rams were in the East, they would have a strong two-game lead in the division. Instead, LA plays in the NFC West, the NFL’s toughest division, and they face the prospect of falling into a tie for last place with the San Francisco 49ers. Speaking of that NFC East, a division which holds a combined 7-20-1 record, one can’t look at the Rams’ record and not question if they are as good as their four wins makes it seem. Each and every one of those wins has come against the NFL’s worst division and every game LA has played outside of the East has resulted in a losing outcome.
So what to make of the Bears, Rams and what you could argue has been a soft schedule to this point? It’s not so simple yet. Football teams don’t have the luxury of making their own schedules. They just have to go out there and beat the teams on those schedules. With a combined 9-3 record, both the Bears and Rams have done just that. Chicago has stood tall against tougher competition but LA has done what good teams do, by winning the games they are supposed to. Monday night will be a great opportunity for both teams to silence their doubters and keep their hopes of winning their division crowns alive.
Bears Quick Hits: A Balanced Offense
The Bears were undefeated when they made a switch from Mitch Trubisky to Nick Foles under center. Some questioned the move while others were less than surprised as Trubisky has become more of a liability to Chicago’s success than the reason behind it. So despite the early season run, the Bears didn’t like what they saw and opted to give their backup the reins in week three. Foles lost his first start the following week but has been perfect ever since including getting yet another win over Tom Brady when Chicago defeated Tampa Bay in week five of the season.
While his stats may not jump off the page, Foles has done enough to keep Chicago on top and their offensive weapons have done the rest. The Bears have five players with 100+ yards including top receiver Allen Robinson, tight end Jimmy Graham, and running back David Montgomery, who also has 300+ yards on the ground.
Rams Quick Hits: An Explosive Offense
Both the Bears and Rams have found offensive success this year as much like Foles in Chicago, Jared Goff in LA has been enjoying a solid year. His numbers as signal caller are a little more eye-popping. Goff has thrown 10 touchdowns, over 1,500 yards and is completing nearly 68 percent of his passes. It’s Goff’s best start in years as he looks to lead LA back to the Super Bowl but Goff isn’t alone. The Rams offense is pretty much stacked top to bottom with not one, not two but three players recording over 100 rushing yards this year. The three-headed attack of Darrell Henderson Jr., Malcolm Brown and Cam Akers has been lethal as each man has found their niche in this offense. From the passing game, Goff has had no shortage of weapons to throw to as well with both Cooper Kupp and Robert Woods over 300 yards and Josh Reynolds and Tyler Higbee over 200 on the year.
Our NFL Betting Preview’s Chicago Bears vs LA Rams Predictions & Picks Verdict
The Rams and Bears have been enjoying success this season but today both face one of their biggest challenges of the year. The winner will cement their place in their division while the loser will likely face doubts about how good they actually are. Records only tell part of the story and this will be a prove-it game as LA and Chicago seek to show the rest of the league they are for real and legitimate contenders in the tough NFC. So these are the Bears vs Rams predictions for this NFL Monday night game preview:
- At home, the Rams enter this one as somewhat lofty six-point favorites with the better U.S. sports betting outlets. For the first of the betting picks we like the Bears +6pts on the spread @ best odds of -105 with Intertops. It is -110 with Bookmaker and BetOnline and -115 with Bovada.
- With regard the total points, look for the over 44.5pts being scored @ -110 with Bookmaker, BetOnline or Intertops.
Marilee writes on NFL, MLB, NBA & tennis for USA Betting. Another area of her sporting journalistic expertise is pro wrestling. A native of Philadelphia and a big Eagles fan, she has been a sports writer for many major websites including Bleacher Report and Rant Sports. She started her journalistic career early, as sports editor for her college newspaper.