Are the Monsters of the Midway back or can the Fins flip the script again?

Some people call it riding the hot hand. Others say it’s jumping on the bandwagon. Either way, the Miami Dolphins are yesterday’s news while the Chicago Bears trend viral like Captain Trips. The two teams meet Sunday at whatever they’re calling the former Joe Robbie Stadium this week.

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Sixty per cent of the betting public back da Bears following their spectacular 48-10 route of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Soldier Field. Quarterback Mitch Trubisky, whose surname still almost rhymes with ‘who is he?’ threw for 354 yards and six touchdowns while completing 19/26 passes. He also ran for another 53 yards, accounting for 92.5% of Chicago’s offensive output. Head coach and former arena football QB Matt Nagy’s offensive scheme receives the most credit for the Monsters of the Midway’s revival. It seems apropos with Michael Myers return to the screen at month’s end in the Hallowe’en reboot.

Mitch Trubisky and Matt Nagy get their signals straight

Mitch Trubisky and Matt Nagy get their signals straight.

Meanwhile, the Dolphins are experiencing Donald Trump-like support numbers after two consecutive losses. Their uninspiring trip to Foxborough, where the Patriots handed them their helmets, was unsucceeded by a stunning capitulation in Cincinnati despite leading by 14 at the half. Once again, Miami are pretenders in most fans’ eyes.

The experts aren’t so convinced. They’re leaning slightly towards Adam Gase’s squad to win this one at home, where they’re undefeated on the young season, despite the line holding steadily at +3.5 for the past two days. Nor can handicappers make up their minds regarding the total [41.5], which at least tells you they don’t expect Trubisky and his receivers to run riot on the road against the stellar Miami secondary.

That doesn’t mean the Bears won’t be a handful for the Dolphins defence. Nagy’s system is a fluid attack designed to exploit the soft spots in a defence on a play-by-play basis, using pre-snap motion to force opponents into tipping their hand. If a team is loading up against the run, they’ll go wide or over the top. If it’s spread, they’ll exploit the gaps.

Gase isn’t overmatched as a strategist. You don’t jump out to big half-time leads as the Dolphins did against Cincinnati or roar back from behind like they did against the Raiders without decent schemes. The problems are consistent execution and game management. Ryan Tannehill shouldn’t be throwing interceptions with a big lead. He should barely be throwing at all. Pound the ball; eat the clock.

Adam Gase searches for a way to make Ryan Tannehill understand why interceptions are bad

Adam Gase searches for a way to make Ryan Tannehill understand why interceptions are bad.

Historically, the teams tend to trade wins. The Bears last won back-to-back against Miami in 1994 and ’97. The Dolphins haven’t done it since 1979 and ’85, the second game being the one where Dan Marino ended Mike Ditka’s run at a perfect season. The Dolphins came away 27-14 winners in 2014’s last meeting between the pair.

More recently, Miami are 1-4 against the spread versus winning teams while Chicago’s taken the under in their last four after winning by at least two touchdowns. The Dolphins have also gone under in their last four against winning teams. You have to pit those trends against the team’s mood after two embarrassing defeats away from home and their determination to keep their season above water.

 

Free Pick: Miami +3.5
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Martin Palazzotto is a freelance writer and author of strange bOUnce, a collection of sport fiction.

 

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Bears at Packers Week One Betting preview.

Written by National Football League Point Spread Analyst Bobby Wallace.

Charliessports.com produces it for Football News. NFL Weekly Picks are the best in the industry and will continue through the Super Bowl in February of 2019. Green Bay Packers fans get a treat in their 2018 season opener. Not only are their NFC North division rivals Chicago Bears coming to town, it’s also Sunday Night Football, besides, the Packers celebrate their 100th season as a franchise. Founded in 1919 the team is owned by the public, and president Mark Murphy made sure the offseason would be filled with events celebrating the Packers existence. Making the contest more intriguing is the Bear recent acquisition of former Oakland Raider star linebacker Khalil Mack who’s expected to make a good defense even better with a special gift for getting to the quarterback. However, it’s been all offense the past three between the teams with Green Bay scoring one hundred and thirteen points the last four meetings. Game time is 8:20 PM EST at historic Lambeau Field in Green Bay, Wisconsin. The NBC Network will be broadcasting. The Opening Betting Line has Green Bay as an eight-point home favorite against the spread. The betting odds total is forty-seven and a half points for Sunday Night’s primetime telecast.

There is little doubt it’ll be a hostile environment for first-year Bears head coach Matt Nagy, making matters worse there will be just a few Bears fans who drive up Interstate 43. Second Year quarterback Mitchell Trubisky should feel more comfortable under center, but the loss of guard Josh Sitton could expose a weakness, against a terrific Green Bay defensive line. Running Backs Jordan Howard, and Tarik Cohen proved they could shoulder the load as an inside-outside combination. 2018 offseason Free Agent acquisition Allen Robinson provides a deep threat which should increase the 60.6 percent scoring rate in the red zone. There’s no doubt General Manager Ryan Pace is all in with the money spent on offense and defense with Mack, who’ll team with 2018 first round draft pick Roquan Smith. The betting odds under the total has cashed in the Bears last five on the road, but Green Bay usually scores a lot in the opener, their last six of seven have gone over for sports bettors. Bovada.Lv, list the Chicago Bears at 13/2 to win the 2018-19 NFC North division.

A healthy Aaron Rodgers is always good news in the smallest market in the NFL. Although Jordy Nelson is now in Oakland tight ends Jimmy Graham along with longtime Jaguars star Marcedes Lewis could be the best thing to happen to Rodgers since Jermichael Finley. Joe Philbin also returns as offensive coordinator; his familiarity with Rodgers brings a degree of security to the unit. The multi-purpose Ty Montgomery is healthy, Jamal William rushed for a team-best 556 yards and should be ready for more responsibility in 2018. The Packers front seven is an elite group but the secondary which wasn’t very well last season especially cornerback improved with draft pick Jaire Alexander. Tramon Williams who was a starter on their 2010 Super Bowl winning team was brought back to shore up the position. Green Bay is 3-1 Against The Point Spread the last four vs. Chicago, plus eight points aren’t that bad considering the festivities surrounding the 100th anniversary of their existence. Bovada.Lv, list the Green Bay Packers at 14/1 to win the 2019 Super Bowl.

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The fourth coach in a decade has Chicago Bears faithful wondering about stability at the top.

Written by National Football League Expert Analyst Greg Nelson.

Charliessports.com produces it for Football Betting. NFL ATS Betting Predictions are the best in the industry and will continue through the Super Bowl in February of 2019. Forty-year-old Matt Nagy takes over for John Fox in the Windy City as head coach of Chicago’s NFL Bears. General Manager Ryan Pace is looking to strike gold after three dismal season’s under his tool edge which unless they make a playoff run will be his swan song. The McCaskey Family is in charge of an organization who hasn’t had a winning season since 2012 and fans are getting restless. This Sports Handicapper remembers in 2010 when they hosted Green Bay in the NFC title game, then quarterback Jay Cutler refused to renter the game after suffering a knee injury and it seems they have never recovered from that dreadful January Sunday. The General Manager is intrigued by the enthusiasm of a youthful Nagy to whom he compares to Kyle Shanahan. The time is now in a division with Minnesota, Green Bay, and Detroit: its playoffs or bust for Pace and Nagy. One thing is for sure fans will still flock to Soldier Field on the city’s South Side for tailgating and hopefully competitive football in the 2018-19 season.

Mark Helfrich takes on the identity of Nagy, but he’s at least had experience serving as the Oregon Ducks head coach from 2013-16. The NFL is a different game altogether which could help a staff that has nothing to lose. Second-year quarterback Mitchell Trubisky (2,193) passing yards in twelve games as a rookie had seven touchdown passes with seven interceptions as a and the new regime expects him to become a top-notch signal caller in 2018. The Bears number thirty ranked offense produced just (175.7) yards passing per contest last in the NFL. However, the rushing attack led by Jordan Howard (1,122) rushing yards and then rookie Tariq Cohen who’s Devin Hester like moves excited fans last year ranked eighteenth league-wide. The lack of a deep threat at wide receiver has been haunting the Bears passing game the past few seasons, they expected former first-round draft pick Kevin White to step up, but he’s had an injury-plagued career. Free Agent acquisitions Allen Robinson, Taylor Gabriel, along with rookie draft choice Anthony Miller is expected to step in and contribute immediately, Robinson missed most of 2017 in Jacksonville. There are also question on the offensive line, guard Kyle Long is solid but he has a long history of injuries, and the question remains how long he can hold up? Unless something spectacular takes place, the Bears offense could be the Achilles heel again in 2018-19.

The organization is high on 2018 number-eight overall draft pick Roquan Smith and expects he’ll be manning the middle for years to come. Chicago ranked in the top third of the NFL in pass defense, total defense and their (101.8) yards per contest they allowed opponents on the ground was eleventh. Defensive Coordinator Vic Fangio seems to have restored the Monsters of the Midway image, a nickname given to the Dick Butkus era Chicago Bears defenses. Defensive end Akiem Hicks is the headliner; it’s about time he got some consideration for All-Pro honors. Nose tackle Eddie Goldman is equally effective against the runs, with Smith in the middle opponents will have a tough time moving the football, especially at home when condition begin to change in November and December. Cornerbacks Kyle Fuller and Prince Amukamara are highly paid and equally productive along with safety Eddie Jackson who had a stellar rookie season could propel the Bears defense to even higher heights. Chicago is solid on defense but will be tested plenty by Aaron Rodgers, Matthew Stafford, and Kirk Cousins.

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