It’s a battle of NFC teams in different situations taking the field in search of a win in the Windy City for week 15 of the NFL season. the Philly Eagles are on the road as they make the trip to face the Chicago Bears Sunday afternoon. Philadelphia routed the Giants 48-22 on the road last Sunday in their previous contest, easily covering the 7.5-point line in the contest. Chicago comes in off a bye week: the Bears were knocked off 28-19 at home by Green Bay in their previous contest on December 4, failing to cover as a 3.5-point underdog in that contest. In the all-time regular season series between the teams, the Bears own a 29-13-1 advantage though the Eagles have won four straight matchups. That includes a 22-14 home win in the most recent matchup on November 3, 2019.
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Philadelphia Eagles Seek Fifth Straight Victory
Philadelphia rung up their fourth straight win as they ran all over the Giants last week: they look to make it five straight wins overall and over the Bears here. The Eagles improved to 12-1 on the season and own a two-game lead over the Cowboys in the NFC East. Against the Giants, Philadelphia led 7-0 after the opening quarter and 21-0 midway through the second en route to the one-sided win. The Eagles rolled up a 437-304 advantage in total offense, picked up 27 first downs while allowing 18 and owned a 32:30 to 27:30 edge in time of possession. Philadelphia also forced the game’s lone turnover in the victory.
For the year, the Eagles are 14th in the league in passing offense with 229.8 yards per game and tied for 2nd in rushing offense with 162.2 yards per contest. Philadelphia stands 1st in the league in scoring offense with 29.7 points per game while they are 7th in the league in scoring defense by allowing 19.1 points per contest. Jalen Hurts has completed 264 of 388 passes for 3,157 yards with 22 touchdowns against three interceptions while getting sacked 34 times. He is second on the team on the ground with 139 carries for 686 yards and 10 scores. Miles Sanders contributes 204 carries for 1,068 yards plus 11 scores. Boston Scott (43 carries, 157 yards, two TDs) and Kenneth Gainwell (41 carries, 183 yards, four TDs) are solid contributors as well. AJ Brown is second on the team with 65 receptions for 1,020 yards plus 10 scores. Dallas Goedert (43 receptions, 544 yards, three TDs) and DeVonta Smith (team-high 66 grabs, 775 yards, five TDs) are top-tier options when the Eagles go to the air. Jake Elliott has hit 43 of 45 extra point attempts and 11 of 13 field goal attempts with a long of 54 this season. Cameron Dicker hit both extra point attempts and went two of two on field goal attempts with a long of 42 in his one-game fill-in role.
The Eagles have a pretty light injury report all things considered. Safety Reed Blankenship (knee) was the lone player to miss practice Wednesday and Thursday in its entirety. Everyone else who isn’t on injured reserve practiced in a full capacity. There are hopes that Goedert (ankle) can be activated off IR and return for this contest though you’ll want to monitor that heading into the weekend.
Chicago Bears Looking for Home Upset
Chicago comes in off a bye last week and enter this game hoping to snap a six-game skid that was extended by their loss to the Packers two weeks ago. The Bears fell to 3-10 on the season and are in the basement of the NFC North: they have also been eliminated from playoff contention. Against the Packers, Chicago played strong football for three quarters before running out of steam. The Bears were up 10-0 after the opening quarter, 16-10 at the half and 19-10 after three quarters only to be outscored 18-0 in the final stanza to take the loss. Chicago held a 409-357 edge in total offense though they were beaten in first downs (21-15), time of possession (32:28 to 27:32) and lost the turnover battle by a 3-0 margin.
On the season, the Bears are 32nd in the league in passing offense with 140.6 yards per game while they are 1st in rushing by averaging 189.2 yards per contest. Chicago is 19th in the league in scoring offense with an average of 20.8 points per game while they are 29th in scoring defense by allowing 25.6 points per contest. Justin Fields is 156 of 253 for 1,896 yards with 13 touchdowns and 10 interceptions while adding a team-high 905 yards and eight scores on the ground. In the run game, David Montgomery is the feature back with 160 carries for 641 yards plus four scores. Khalil Herbert (108 carries, 643 yards, four TD) was putting up quality numbers before landing on IR. Darnell Mooney leads the team with 40 catches for 493 yards plus two scores. His season came to an end after ankle surgery following the Jets game on November 27. Tight end Cole Kmet (35 receptions, 408 yards, five TD), Equanimeous St. Brown (17 grabs, 280 yards, TD), Dante Pettis (14 catches, 202 yards, two TD) and Chase Claypool (12 receptions, 111 yards) are other contributors in the passing game. Cairo Santos has hit 22 of 26 extra point attempts and 18 of 20 field goal tries with a long of 51 this season. Michael Badgley didn’t attempt an extra point but hit all four field goal attempts with a long of 40 in his one-game stint with the team.
Coming off the bye, the Bears have a pretty short injury list. Montgomery (illness), Claypool (knee) and tight end Trevon Wesco (calf) all didn’t practice Thursday. Claypool and Wesco also missed practice Wednesday so they are trending in the wrong direction, while Montgomery probably will take the field. Tackle Larry Borom (knee) didn’t practice Wednesday but was limited Thursday so he is trending in the right direction. Watch for any updates on these guys heading to the weekend.
Best bets for this game
Full game side bet
We’ll see a lot of running the ball in this game with the Eagles tied for second on the ground while the Bears have the #1 run offense in the league entering week 15. That could prove problematic for a Bears defense that is 27th in the league in stopping the run (146.3 yards per game) and who have surrendered a league-worst 21 rushing scores this season. Chicago, even with their improved offensive numbers in recent weeks, lacks the firepower to contend with good offensive teams. Fields can’t do it all on his own and the defense is ill-equipped to slow down the Eagles’ attack. Chicago puts up a game effort but the Eagles put this game away and cover the line on the road to improve to 13-1.
Prediction: Philadelphia Eagles -9
Full game total pick
Philadelphia enters week 15 having seen the over hit in nine of their 13 games on the season. The Eagles have gone over the number in three straight games and seven of their last eight contests. On the road this season, Philadelphia has split their six games in relation to the total when they venture out of the City of Brotherly Love. Chicago has gone over the number in nine of their 13 games on the year as well entering this contest. The Bears have recorded a string of seven straight overs entering this game. At home this season, Chicago has seen the over hit in four of their six games, including each of their last three. Offenses are the name of the game here and we see another healthy point total from the Eagles, pushing this over the total.
Prediction: Over 48
Chris King, “Chris King”
Chris King has been immersed in the world of professional and collegiate sports for more than three decades. Whether it’s playing pickup games or being involved in organized sports to being a fan, he’s checked all the boxes. From the NFL to arena football, the NHL to the KHL, the NBA to the WNBA to college hoops, and even MLB to the KBO. If it’s out there, he’s covered it and bet on it as well, as Chris has been an expert bettor in his career. Before joining Winners and Whiners back in 2015, his work appeared around the internet and in print. He’s written books for Ruckus Books about college basketball, the NBA, NFL, MLB, NHL, golf, and the World Cup. If you’re looking for the inside track on hitting a winner, do yourself a favor and read what Chris has to say.