Thursday Night NFL Picks — Chicago Bears at Green Bay Packers (10/20)
There have been a lot of questions swirling around about whether Aaron Rodgers has “lost it” or not, and some of those questions are legitimate, considering that he isn’t necessarily handicapped when it comes to the availability of his receivers. He has not set the world on fire, going back to last season. And so the Green Bay Packers may be in a bit of a dilemma, because they would certainly need something extra from him if they are going to look impressive against the Chicago Bears in Thursday night NFL betting action. The game begins at 8:25 PM ET at Lambeau Field, and BetAnySports customers will have the opportunity to place wagers on this game while is in progress, using the state-of-the-art software available through Live Betting Ultra.
Rodgers threw the ball 42 times last week against the Dallas Cowboys, and still could not break 300 yards. That would appear to be a problem; he is ranked 26th in the NFL in completion percentage (60.2%) and yards per attempt (6.5). These are not glittering numbers, when you consider what this man has achieved in his career. And it looks as though Jordy Nelson, who missed last season with an ACL injury, is back healthy and ready to perform for him. Also, the Packers got a nice effort last week from Ty Montgomery, who could fit into things as his third receiver. But they have only gotten eight receptions out of tight end Richard Rodgers, and we know that this is one place the QB has historically liked to throw the ball.
In the Thursday night NFL betting odds posted on this game by the people at BetAnySports, Green Bay is favored by more than a touchdown:
Green Bay Packers -7.5 (-105)
Chicago Bears +7.5 (-115)
Over 45.5 points -110
Under 45.5 points -110
The Bears have been using Brian Hoyer at quarterback, in the absence of Jay Cutler, and it may stay that way. Cutler is good, but he may not be the long-term answer for this team, not if it wants to contend for division championships. Hoyer is really no better than a stopgap either, but he has at least moved the chains a little bit. In fact, he has topped 300 yards in four straight games, with a completion percentage just below 69%, and those are better numbers in Rodgers has produced over the last season and a half.
The thing about Chicago is that it has had a hard time converting those yards into points. In fact, they are last in the NFL in that category. They are also missing some people on offense, which makes the task difficult. Eddie Royal is a valuable possession receiver, and he won’t be available for this game. Kevin White, the speedster who was last year’s first-round draft pick, has a broken leg. So Hoyer has been turning to a name Cameron Meredith, who has been targeted 27 times and caught 20 passes over the last two games. Maybe he’s a pretty good complement to Alshon Jeffery out there, but he needs to prove himself over a longer period of time.
Green Bay has been getting used to not having its full complement of secondary people. They will miss Demarious Randall once again, and Sam Shields is unavailable for this club, as he has too many concussion issues. Their stellar figure of just two yards per carry allowed going into last Sunday‘s game against Dallas proved to be somewhat artificial, as they were run over, through and around by rookie Ezekiel Elliott, who had 157 yards when all was said and done. So maybe the Bears will try to turn to rookie Jordan Howard – who has two 100-yard games under his belt – loose in this one. Hoyer could use the support.
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