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The Panthers might not have McCaffery, but they have QB Teddy Bridgewater and he is finding a way to get Carolina wins, whereas these offensively challenged Bears to look just a couple of injuries and losses away from completely spiraling downwards.
Panthers -1.5 (-110)
|Bears vs Panthers Information|
|What||Chicago Bears vs Carolina Panthers|
|Where||Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte, NC|
|When||Sun, October 18, 2020; 1:00 PM ET|
|How to watch||FOX|
QB Nick Foles is 1-1 as the Chicago Bears starter and he will lead his team to Carolina in Week 6 to face this offensive-minded Panthers team, which is good for Chicago because they have the ninth-best defense in the league right now and once they get their QB situation sorted out should be incredibly dangerous.
The Carolina Panthers lost their dual-threat running back Christian McCaffery (ankle) and are hoping that because of the COVID adjustments made to the IR return rules he can be back sooner rather than later, but meanwhile QB Teddy Bridgewater is taking over and leading the teams to wins.
These two football franchises have played each other 10 other times before (including 1 postseason game), with the Carolina Panthers winning 4 of those games and the Chicago Bears winning 6 of them.
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The Bears have an offense ranked in the NFL basement, gaining just 323 total yards per game and scoring 22.6 points each matchup, numbers that might make it difficult to keep up with and outscore the much more effective Panthers offense, ranked sixth in production gaining about 400 yards per game and scoring 24.4 points each time.
That is where the Bears ninth-ranked defense comes in, and with hard-hitting LBs like Khalil Mack and Roquan Smith and Danny Trevathan roaming the field, any attempts at midfield receptions quickly become a painful endeavor for all receivers and tight ends involved.
Both sides of the ball must come together and will once QB Nick Foles begins to adjust to his role as the Bears starter, and then it’s up to HC Matt Nagy to begin game planning around his type of football.
Panthers Teddy Bridgewater is on a three-game winning streak as starting quarterback for the Carolina Panthers, something he has most likely been dreaming about since injuries forced him to the sidelines a few seasons ago.
Now he has been effective under center in Carolina as their starter, with a completion percentage of 73 and 130 completions for 1460 yards and 6 touchdowns with 3 interceptions on the season.
If Bridgewater is this good without McCaffery, imagine the two of them together out of the same backfield – that could happen sooner than normal based on the COVID change of the rules guiding the NFL’s injured reserve list.
Bears starting QB Nick Foles is a twelve-year NFL veteran and former Super Bowl MVP who brings his experience and leadership to a Chicago offense that seems a bit lost in 2020.
He has a 1-1 record as the Chicago starting QB, and so far has posted 72 completions for 680 yards and 5 touchdowns 3 interceptions with a passing completion percentage of 63.7.
Foles can win, and he seems comfortable with OC Bill Lazor’s style of offense, so if he can stay healthy his defense can help keep him in the games as he gradually adjusts to his role.
The key to a Panthers win in this matchup with the Bears is to keep their QB Nick Foles off guard and unsure of his safety, and that is one of the main responsibilities of Carolina rookie DE Yetur Gross-Matos.
This season, the NFL freshman Gross-Matos has a sack, a quarterback hit, a forced fumble, and 7 total tackles, excellent numbers for a player brand new to the league like he is.
Expect this former Penn State Nittany Lion second-round draft pick to gradually improve even more under DC Phil Snow’s guidance, but a big game from Gross-Matos against this shaky Bears offense and new QB could be exactly what the Panthers could use to earn a victory.
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Mike Lukas is a retired standup comedian turned freelance writer now living in Dallas, Texas, originally from Cleveland, Ohio. His love for the game of football and all things Cleveland Browns turned Mike into a pro blogger years ago. Now Mike enjoys writing about all thirty-two NFL teams, hoping to help football gamblers gain a slight edge in their pursuit of the perfect wager. Email: [email protected]More info on Mike Lukas
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