MNF Betting Preview and Prediction: Minnesota at Chicago

Minnesota RB Dalvin Cook has carved up Detroit and Green Bay for 369 rushing yards and five TDs in the last two weeks.

Chicago Bears vs. Minnesota Vikings
Line: Minnesota -3.5
Total: 44
Where: Soldier Field
When: Monday, 11/16, at 8:15 p.m. ET
TV: ESPN

One of the biggest early line moves on this week’s NFL slate came when Chicago went from a 2-
point favorite to a 2.5-point underdog against Minnesota in Monday night’s tilt.

The line move was not entirely surprising, as the Bears looked bad in a loss to Tennessee and the
Vikings are coming off a pair of impressive wins. These NFC North rivals will meet again in late
December.

Since that initial line movement, the Vikings have gone to -3.5 across the key number of three.

Both teams are chasing Green Bay in the division standings. The Packers are -900 ‘chalk’ to
win the NFC North, while Chicago is +675 and Minnesota is 18/1.

Minnesota has covered in four of its last five games, winning three of them outright. One of the
losses came in a 27-26 heartbreaker at Seattle. The Vikings are coming off consecutive wins
against Green Bay and Detroit.

Running back Dalvin Cook has been the star of the offense, especially during the last few weeks.
He had a 206-yard outburst against the Lions last week. Chicago held him to 35 yards on 14
carries in the last meeting.

Kirk Cousins has completed 65.6 percent of his passes for 1,855 yards and has a 15-to-10
touchdown-to-interception ratio. His top target has been rookie wide receiver Justin Jefferson,
who appears to be on a collision course with stardom. Jefferson has caught 34 passes for 627
yards and three touchdowns.

Veteran Adam Thielen and tight end Kyle Rudolph have both been consistent weapons as well.
They only had a combined 78 receiving yards last week, but that was mainly due to Cook’s 9.4
yards per carry.

Cook will be a huge part of the game plan on Monday, especially against a Bears’ defense that is
No. 7 against the pass and No. 14 against the run.

Chicago, which is on a three-game losing skid, has really struggled on offense this year. The fan
base thought the script would flip when they changed from Mitch Trubisky to Nick Foles at
quarterback early in the season, but it has not made a difference.

The Bears are No. 29 in total offense, notching 317.8 yards per game. They could find some
success against a Minnesota defense that is also No. 29 in yards allowed per game (412.9).

Foles is completing 65.6 percent of his passes, but his touchdown-to-interception ratio is just 10-
to-7. He has been sacked 12 times over the last three games. David Montgomery has struggled to
run the ball, averaging just 3.6 yards per carry. He is ‘out’ tonight with a concussion.

Allen Robinson II is the only wide receiver with more than 350 yards, catching 57 passes for 712
yards and three touchdowns. Darnell Mooney is second on the team with 31 receptions for 348
yards.

Minnesota is 5-1 ATS in its last six games, but Chicago has covered at a 13-4-1 clip in its last 18
games as a home underdog. These teams have played ‘under’ in 12 of their last 17 meetings. The
Bears have covered in five of their last six against the Vikings.

The Vikings’ lone non-cover in their last six games was when Cook was out injured vs. Atlanta.

The pick: Minnesota -3.5

Editor’s Note: When Blake filed this story, the Vikings were -3 so if you’re tailing him, buy the hook to -3.

Minnesota is quite simply playing much better all-around football right now. The defense was a
huge liability early in the season and is still bad overall from a statistical perspective, but the unit
has been solid over the last few games. Chicago’s offense has been consistently bad all season
and things do not seem to be trending toward a positive direction. Cook will be eager to bounce
back from what was a disappointing game in his last outing against the Bears defense. The
Vikings have been cashing tickets and have some momentum heading into this one, which is the
opposite of where Chicago is right now.

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