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Predictions & Projections
David Dorey  

Sortable Player Projections | Game Predictions Summary | Projections by Team

WEEK 17
2011
BAL at CIN * DAL at NYG * NYJ at MIA SF at STL
* BUF at NE DET at GB PIT at CLE TB at ATL
CAR at NO * IND at JAC * SD at OAK * TEN at HOU
* UPDATED CHI at MIN * KC at DEN SEA at ARI * WAS at PHI

Prediction: CHI 17, MIN 20

The Bears were eliminated from the playoffs last week when they lost their fifth straight game and they only sport a 2-5 road record anyway. The Vikings are just 3-12 on the season but come off a win in Washington that ended a six game losing streak. This is a replay of week six when the Bears decimated the Vikings 39-10.

Chicago Bears
Homefield: Soldier Field
Grass
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 ATL 30-12 10 DET 37-13
2 @NO 13-30 11 SD 31-20
3 GB 17-27 12 @OAK 20-25
4 CAR 34-29 13 KC 3-10
5 @DET 13-24 14 @DEN 10-13
6 MIN 39-10 15 SEA 14-38
7 @TB 24-18 16 @GB 21-35
8 Bye - 17 @MIN -
9 @PHI 30-24      
Bears Report | Statistics | Roster
CHICAGO at MIN Rush Catch Pass
QB Josh McCown - - 240,2
RB Kahlil Bell 70 30 -
TE Kellen Davis - 10,1 -
WR Roy Williams - 60,1 -
WR Devin Hester - 50 -
WR Earl Bennett - 30 -
WR Sam Hurd - 40 yrs -
WR Johnny Knox - 30 -
PK Robbie Gould 1 FG 2 XP -
Pregame Notes: It never really got any better than the 29 point win over the Vikings - a high point in offensive scoring for the year and the best defensive showing as well. But times are hard for the Bears who have held out hope that either Jay Cutler or Matt Forte could return. In the end, it looks like they will not and it is too late even if they did.

QUARTERBACK: The Bears are going to start Josh McCown again this week after his 242 yards and one score looked so big compared to recent weeks of Caleb Hanie. But the reality is that Hanie had 254 yards and two scores in his first game as well so McCown is no lock to play well. Jay Cutler passed for 242 yards and two scores on this defense in week six.

Tough call on what to expect this week but a safer expectation would be moderate yardage and just one or two scores. Could be a big game with a weak Vikes defense but it is in Minny and McCown is playing without Matt Forte at the end of a lost season.

RUNNING BACKS: Marion Barber has already drawn the ire of HC Lovie Smith for being injury prone but most anyone in Dallas could have alerted him before they took him on board in the offseason. Barber is nursing a bad calf. Kahlil Bell played well in relief with 121 yards on 23 carries in Green Bay and he added 38 yards on four receptions. Even Armando Allen was called up from the practice squad and gained 40 yards on 11 runs.

I'll project for another start by Bell and adjust later if needed. The Vikings have been decent against the run with only three runners topping 90 yards on them this year. Bell still makes for a decent start again this week since he is also a very good receiver. Chances are that Bell has locked onto the #2 spot for next year.

WIDE RECEIVERS: Roy Williams was the best receiver last week when McCown started and gained 81 yards on six catches but no other wideout was better than 51 yards and none of them scored. Back in week six against the Vikings, Devin Hester had his best game of the year with five catches for 91 yards and one score but no other receiver managed more than 50 yards. Pretty much like every other game.

TIGHT ENDS: No fantasy value. They occasionally catch a score and even last week with McCown, Kellen Davis had one touchdown but they almost always come on just one catch in the game and remains below 20 yards in most games.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points CHI 25 6 25 26 12 2
Preventing Fantasy Points MIN 31 20 31 21 32 27


Minnesota Vikings
Homefield: Metrodome
FieldTurf
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 @SD 17-24 10 @GB 7-45
2 TB 20-24 11 OAK 21-27
3 DET 23-26 12 @ATL 14-24
4 @KC 17-22 13 DEN 32-35
5 ARI 34-10 14 @DET 28-34
6 @CHI 10-39 15 NO 20-42
7 GB 27-33 16 @WAS 33-26
8 @CAR 24-21 17 CHI -
9 Bye -      
Vikings Report | Statistics | Roster
MINNESOTA vs CHI Rush Catch Pass
QB Christian Ponder - - 220,2
RB Toby Gerhardt 50 20 -
TE Kyle Rudolph - 30,1 -
WR Devin Aromashodu - 40 -
WR Greg Camarillo - 30 -
WR Percy Harvin 20 80,1 -
PK Ryan Longwell 2 FG 2 XP -

Pregame Notes: The Vikings wind down a bad season and just when you think it cannot get worse, Adrian Peterson shreds his knee and may not be ready for the start of next year. That's a tough ending to a tough season. The minor gains made in the offense are now all in question if the Vikes have to open 2012 without arguably the best running back in the NFL. This is a final home game and the Vikes showed up and won in Washington last week.

The best chance the Vikings have in this game is the final home stand against a team that is very dispirited after watching their season slip away.

QUARTERBACK: Christian Ponder got his first playing time of the year when he came in midway and relieved Donovan McNabb from the other meeting with the Bears. They combined for 276 yards but no scores in that game. Ponder has since been encouraging and plays better at home. Last week he was knocked out by a concussion but is likely to play in this matchup. I will update as needed depending on him passing baseline tests.

The Bears have allowed plentiful passing yards in recent games and Ponder should manage at least one touchdown if not two. This is a final home game, I like the higher side.

RUNNING BACKS: The loss of Adrian Peterson is always a bad thing and now the Vikes need to watch this game and decide if standing pat in the offseason will be okay in the event that Peterson is not ready to start in week one. Peterson was held to only 39 yards and one score on 12 runs in Chicago. Even on the road, the Bears have been solid and kept opposing runners below 75 yards in all but one game.

How good Toby Gerhardt really is may not be known because defenses let down when Peterson is not playing. Going against the Bears with only Gerhart should keep the rushing stats low and Gerhart should be challenged to have even a decent showing here. No Peterson means they prepare expressly to stop him.

WIDE RECEIVERS: None of the Vikings wideouts have mattered this year aside from a brief stretch that Michael Jenkins scored a few times. Except Percy Harvin. He has been the only one with any amount of production or consistency and caught seven passes for 78 yards in the last meeting with the Bears. He has scored in five of the last six games and maintained around 100 total yards in those games as well.

TIGHT ENDS: There has been minimal play for the tight ends this year and Vishante Shiancoe has been phased out. The highly drafted rookie Kyle Rudolph scored just last week and will be taking over the primary spot in 2012. The Bears are weak against tight ends and Shiancoe and Rudolph combined for 65 yards in the previous meeting.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points MIN 14 11 19 19 21 20
Preventing Fantasy Points CHI 22 8 18 27 20 26

WEEK 17
2011
BAL at CIN DAL at NYG NYJ at MIA SF at STL
BUF at NE DET at GB PIT at CLE TB at ATL
CAR at NO IND at JAC SD at OAK TEN at HOU
  CHI at MIN KC at DEN SEA at ARI WAS at PHI

a d v e r t i s e m e n t