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Predictions & Projections
David Dorey
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The Huddle
~ 2008 ~
Season Ticket
Sunday Late

Prediction: CHI 20, GB 23

Update: As expected Kyle Orton will be back this week even though he was limited in all practices because of his ankle. He is listed as probable and will be back.

Big battle in the NFC North here with the Bears tied with the Vikings for the lead at 5-4 and the Packers are one game behind and on a two game losing streak. The Bears come off a loss to the Titans without Kyle Orton playing but he may be back this week. This is a desperation situation for the Packers though - they cannot afford to lose this home game.

The Bears swept the Packers last year, winning 27-20 in Green Bay and later 35-7 in Chicago.

Chicago Bears (5-4)
Homefield: Soldier Field
  Opp Score Spread Over/Under
1 @IND 29-13 +9.5 44
2 @CAR 17-20 +3 37
3 TB 24-27 -3 35.5
4 PHI 24-20 +3 45
5 @DET 34-7 -3.5 44.5
6 @ATL 20-22 -2.5 43.5
7 MIN 48-41 -3 38
8 BYE - - -
9 DET 27-23 -13 43
10 TEN 14-21 +3 38.5
11 @GB - OFF -
12 @STL - - -
13 @MIN - - -
14 JAX - - -
15 NO - - -
16 GB - - -
17 @HOU - - -
CHI @ GB Rush Catch Pass
QB Kyle Orton     200,1
RB Matt Forte 70,1 40  
TE Greg Olsen   30,1  
WR Marty Booker   20  
WR Rashied Davis   40  
WR Devin Hester   50  
PK Robbie Gould 2 FG 2 XP  
Pregame Notes: Kyle Orton was out last week and let Rex Grossman take the brunt of the Titans defense but Orton did work out before the game and should be back this week potentially. The Bears end a three game stretch at home and now embark on a three week road trip before settling back to another three game stretch in Chicago. The Bears also need to win this game to maintain their lead in the division and to hold off a rival but the road has not been that easy this year.

Quarterback: Rex Grossman took the start last week as Kyle Orton let his ankle heal but HC Lovie Smith says that Orton can play even if he only had limited practice so barring a setback, Orton has an excellent chance to get back on the field this week. A bigger concern here is that the Bears only had four road games so far and ignoring the Detroit freebie, Orton only passed for one score in the other three games combined and with marginal yardage. The Packers have their own injury problems in the secondary that will help the Bears but this will be a major test for Orton.

Griese passed for 214 yards and two scores in Green Bay last year.

Running Backs: Matt Forte rolls along unchanged - scoring a touchdown almost every week and yet still gaining well under four yards per carry in most games this season. But he regularly has over 25 touches per week and has become one of the leading receivers among running backs with upwards of seven catches per week and even three receiving touchdowns on the season. he doesn't do a lot with every touch but he shares so little that his volume of work has made him one of the more productive fantasy running backs this year.

The Bears ran for just 64 yards in Green Bay last season but had one rushing touchdown.

Wide Receivers: Brandon Lloyd will likely play this week and was on track for week ten before being held out of the game. This unit remains a mishmash of players and production and the consistency factor here is rather low. Devin Hester remains the most productive with around 50 yards per week but he hasn't scored in over a month. Marty Booker has only one game over 37 yards and no catches for two weeks despite being a starter. The Bears will need to throw more in coming weeks and this unit will improve but it has a ways to go before reaching average.

No wide out had more than 17 yards in either meeting with the Packers last year. I am holding out Lloyd from the projections until we know for sure that he will play.

Tight Ends: Greg Olsen chugs along but only has two scores on the season and usually ends up around 40 yards most weeks.

Olsen and Clark split 119 yards and two scores between them in Green Bay last season.

Match Against the Defense: There is nothing special about the Packers rush defense that has allowed nine rushing touchdowns already this year and big yardage in about half the games. Don't be scared to start Forte this week since he should manage his standard one score plus over one hundred total yards. The Packers have lost MLB Nick Barnett to IR this week as well.

Orton, assumedly, faces a decent secondary that that has been above average and there's nothing on the Bears squad that has caused many problems for opponents this year. Look for one passing score that should favor Olsen slightly though they throw little to him in the endzone. But no wideout stands as a good risk either.

Gaining Fantasy Points CHI 10 17 24 11 14 4
Preventing Fantasy Points    GB 6 24 5 18 23 12

Green Bay Packers (4-5)
Homefield: Lambeau Field
  Opp Score Spread Over/Under
1 MIN 24-19 -3 38.5
2 @DET 48-25 -3 45
3 DAL 16-27 +3 51
4 @TB 21-30 +1.5 43
5 ATL 24-27 -3 41
6 @SEA 27-17 +2.5 46.5
7 IND 34-14 +1 47
8 BYE - - -
9 @TEN 16-19 +5.5 42.5
10 @MIN 27-28 +2.5 45.5
11 CHI - OFF -
12 @NO - - -
13 CAR - - -
14 HOU - - -
15 @JAX - - -
16 @CHI - - -
17 DET - - -
GB vs CHI Rush Catch Pass
QB Aaron Rodgers     260,2
RB Ryan Grant 80    
TE Donald Lee   30  
WR Donald Driver   70,1  
WR Greg Jennings   70,1  
WR Jordy Nelson   50  
PK Mason Crosby 3 FG 2 XP  

Pregame Notes: The Packers have hit a rough spot with two losses in a row and only a 2-5 record since week two. What is worse is that the last two games ended up losses by three points or less. The schedule is never light this year but upcoming games against NO, HOU and DET should be wins and the Packers play competitively no matter what but this week is a must win. A win doesn't ensure anything but a loss probably will - like a losing season.

Quarterback: Aaron Rodgers comes off his worst game every with just 142 passing yards in Minnesota with no score for the first time this season. He has been all over the map this year with four games over 290 passing yards and yet four games with less than 190 yards. He has thrown only one interception in the last four games though and has made far fewer mistakes than that old guy who used to play there. But Rodgers had one of his best games playing in Tennessee with 314 passing yards so he can get the stats - the only question is if he will do this week or not. It is a matter of consistency.

Favre passed for 322 yards and a score against the visiting Bears last year.

Running Backs: Perhaps the best of all news on the offense is that Ryan Grant is slowly getting back onto track with over 75 yards in each of the last five games and two scores on the season. He is almost never used as a receiver but his rushing totals have finally started to produce consistently significant fantasy numbers.

The Packers rushed for 121 yards and one score when the Bears visited last year.

Wide Receivers: The passing numbers have been depressed lately and that has gone directly against the wideouts. Greg Jennings hasn't scored since week six and only has four touchdowns on the season. His string of big games to start the year has deteriorated to having two of the last three games come in with less than 40 yards. Donald Driver fares no better with only one score since week six and only one game over 55 yards in the last month. Driver was the star against the Titans with a season high 136 yards but went back to only five catches for 46 yards on Sunday.

Jennings caught four passes for 83 yards and a score against the Bears last year while Driver had 51 yards on his four receptions.

Tight Ends: No matter where they play or the quality of their opponent, the Packers just never use their tight ends much anymore. Donald Lee comes up with 25 yards only in a rare good game.

Match Against the Defense: The Bears rushing defense has been outstanding this year and only a bad game against Adrian Peterson is dropping them in the rankings. Grant is running better but still has not scored like 2007. Look for a decent game here in yardage and no touchdowns.

Rodgers faces a secondary that has ben weakened and which has allowed over 289 passing yards to each of the last four opponents and two scores in all but one road game. Rodgers is not going to win this one handing off to Grant so look for a decent to good showing here that has two passing scores which heavily favor the wideouts.

Gaining Fantasy Points GB 6 30 5 24 8 1
Preventing Fantasy Points    CHI 18 12 29 19 21 10

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