The Chicago Bears head to the Big Apple to face the New York Giants on Sunday. Here are five predictions for that upcoming tilt.
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Nov 14, 2016; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning (10) throws a pass during the first half of their game against the Cincinnati Bengals at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports
The season got ugly- really ugly. Going into last week, the Chicago Bears were the cockiest 2-6 team in NFL history. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers put them in their place as one of the worst teams in football. In one loss, the bottom has fallen out of the season and the fan base has thrown up their hands in disgust.
NostraButkus was nowhere to be found. After he flashed his ridiculously accurate prognostications against the Green Bay Packers he vanished into thin air. While the Bears season was crumbling, fans couldn’t turn to NostraButkus for some clarity. Fans needed some understanding of what to make of this disaster, but NostraButkus was not there for them.
Search parties were sent out, but none could even find a trace of his existence. The police tried to put the dogs on his sent but they found nary a trail. They thought it was the last of NostraButkus, but once they had given up hope- he re-emerged.
NostraButkus is back. He spent the last month in the Himalayan Mountains re-centering himself. He meditated with the Dalai Lama and brought peace to warring villages. After his sojourn, he has finally returned, he has seen the result of the Bears upcoming game with the New York Giants, and what follows is what he has foreseen.
5. Pernell McPhee will have an impact
Nov 13, 2016; Tampa, FL, USA; Chicago Bears outside linebacker Pernell McPhee (92) reacts after he sacks Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Jameis Winston (3) (not pictured) during the second half at Raymond James Stadium. Tampa Bay Buccaneers defeated the Chicago Bears 36-10. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
Pernell McPhee likes to talk smack. He did so again this week talking about the Giants offense and how the Bears defense was going to get to Eli Manning and knock him around. The Giants didn’t take to that too kindly, and he’s given them some bulletin board material.
You could argue that a linebacker who has missed most of the season on a 2-7 football team shouldn’t be opening his mouth at all, but the one thing about McPhee, when he does it, he backs it up. McPhee has started to make his presence felt the last couple weeks and he will do so again on Sunday. He will be the Bears biggest impact defender.
4. Both QBs will surpass 300 yards passing
Nov 14, 2016; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning (10) calls a play at the line against the Cincinnati Bengals during the third quarter at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports
The NY Giants do a very good job shutting down the run and the Bears do a decent job of it as well. The Bears secondary is still having issues and if the Bears struggle establishing the run early, Dowell Loggains has no problem abandoning the run and getting pretty pass-happy.
The Bears can’t be as bad as they were last week, even with the loss of Alshon Jeffery and Kyle Long, they are professionals, they have pride, they’ll be better. With the Giants struggles in the running game, both teams are going to focus on passing the ball to move the chains.
Expect both quarterbacks to rack up some yardage, and both of them should be right at or above 300 yards passing for the game.
3. Leonard Floyd will continue to impress
Nov 13, 2016; Tampa, FL, USA; Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Jameis Winston (3) throws the ball as Chicago Bears outside linebacker Leonard Floyd (94) defends during the first half at Raymond James Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
Over the last few games, Leonard Floyd has started to prove that he was worth trading up one slot to get him in the 2016 NFL draft. He has shown amazing quickness and athleticism and has been constantly in the backfield the last few games.
He’s tallied 4.5 sacks, forced a fumble and even found his way into the end zone in the last three games. Floyd will make a couple impact plays again, including sacking Eli Manning. If Floyd continues to play like this, he might even find himself as the defensive rookie of the year and poised to become a significant impact player for years to come.
2. Jay Cutler will play better
Nov 13, 2016; Tampa, FL, USA; Chicago Bears quarterback Jay Cutler (6) throws the ball against the Tampa Bay Buccaneersduring the second half at Raymond James Stadium. Tampa Bay Buccaneers defeated the Chicago Bears 36-10. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
That’s not saying much, but it’s more of a lack of a worthy headline than anything. Cutler was horrendous against Tampa. He played so poorly, that it was arguably his worst performance as a Chicago Bear.
The one thing we know about Cutler is that he’s inconsistent, but he rarely is “Turnover Jay” two weeks in a row. He will have another clunker or two before the Bears season ends, but it won’t be against the Giants. Cutler will throw for over 300 yards, throw a passing touchdown, and only turn the ball over once.
It may not be enough to get the Bears a victory, but it will keep the Bears respectable.
1. The Giants will drop the Bears to 2-8
Nov 14, 2016; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Giants wide receiver Sterling Shepard (87) celebrates his touchdown during the second half at MetLife Stadium. The Giants defeated the Bengals 21-20. Mandatory Credit: Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports
This isn’t quantum physics. The Bears simply aren’t a good enough team to go into New York and beat the Giants on the road. That’s why they are a 7.5 point underdog. The Giants are 6-3 and riding a four game winning streak. This is truly a tale of two teams headed in opposite directions.
The Giants may not be a part of the NFL’s elite, but they are certainly good enough to be a playoff team. The Bears won’t get blown out because that’s not how the Giants play. This game will be fairly close, but you’ll never have the feeling that the Giants are going to lose this game.