It was a wild Sunday for me. After being thunderstruck by home dogs this year, I took a pledge from taking a week off from betting against any home dogs. In doing so, I passed on some spreads that I really wanted to take such as Patriots (-4) over Bills, 49ers (-4) over Jets, and Bengals (-2.5) over Jaguars. The home dog didn’t get there way in those games and they were all easy winners.
Instead, I tried to identify the strongest home teams and took the Falcons and Cardinals. I lost those two plays against the spread, but I decided to hedge my bets by teasing those spreads down so the spread wasn’t a factor. I hit my teasers and ended up Sunday in positive territory after going 3-for-3 on Saturday thanks to Brandon’s two picks and Texas over Oklahoma State. I managed to hit my teasers thanks to a last-second field goal in the Falcons game and an overtime win in the Cardinals game, which proves that it’s better to be lucky than good. Let’s get into Monday Night’s game.
CHICAGO BEARS (+3.5) @ DALLAS COWBOYS
Dallas hasn’t been very impressive the last two weeks. After scoring just 7 points against Seattle and pretty much getting rocked by the Seahawks, the Cowboys managed a mere 16-10 win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on their home turf.
I like taking the Bears and the points tonight. This game is all about defense. Chicago’s defense has been tremendous this year. The Bears rank 1st in sacks and 2nd in takeaways. Dallas has a pretty solid defense themselves. With the over/under at 41.5, I think the opportunity can be taken to tease the over/under to under 48.5 to pair up with Bears +10.5. In a tight defensive battle, it’s nice to have the 3.5 points on my side. This game should come down to a field goal.
My concern here is the Bears offense. What Jay Cutler will show up on Monday Night? Dr. Jekyll or Mr. Hyde? Cutler has me less than optimistic with the Bears chances on the road against a solid defensive unit. Case in point: the Green Bay Packers game in week 2. Cutler was awesome in the season debut against the Colts, absolutely horrendous against the Packers, and then poor against the Rams. His average QB rating is a 58.6. I don’t expect a big game out of him against a solid Cowboys defense. Matt Forte is listed as questionable, but I have a feeling that he’ll be in the starting lineup this week. Forte will be very valuable in the Bears passing game.
Despite Cutler’s shaky start to the season, I’m expecting his defense to keep the Bears in this game well into the 4th quarter. I think you see a lot of three and outs, a lot of punts, and a lot of field goals in this game. However, turnovers can turn into easy points. In a tight defensive battle, I’ll favor taking the points, as I feel that this game will be decided by 3. I’ll play one unit on Bears (+3.5) and one unit on a teaser of Bears (+10.5)/Under 48.5. Even if the Cowboys win 24-17, 27-20, or 27-17, I’m coming out even. Good luck.
Prediction: Bears 20 – Cowboys 16
Pick Against the Spread: Bears +3.5 (Confidence: 6/10)
Teaser: Bears +10.5/Under 48.5 (Confidence: 7/10)