New York Giants Nightmare 2013 will carry on Thursday, with Vegas finally seeming to accept that this team is terrible and will remain terrible for the foreseeable future. The Chicago Bears give New York more than a touchdown on the point spread in hosting the erstwhile NFL champs on Thursday night football.
Giants-Bears Week 6 Spread: Bears -8 (via The Associated Press on Wednesday)
While Big Blue only got 4-5 points on spread against the Denver Broncos Week 2 and were even favored as recently as last week against the Philadelphia Eagles, the point spread has swung drastically the opposite direction at Soldier Field. Conceding the final 17 points in a home loss to the Eagles will do that.
The fact that Chicago (3-2) is riding a two-game losing streak is probably what keeps this line south of double-digits. Giving New York (0-5) more than a touchdown confirms that the “sleeping giant” factor has been basically given up on.
Prediction: Bears cover
Maybe I’m crazy — crazier than Tom Coughlin for giving so many David Wilson snaps to Da’Rel Scott and Brandon Jacobs — but I think this team has one more turnaround in it under the old ball coach. I don’t think it happens until, or if, Wilson returns to give this run game a real chance to keep Big Blue’s defense off the field.
Yet I am waiting for the moment Eli Manning returns to his 2011 form and this pass offense actually keeps New York close in a contest. Manning’s moved the ball and flashed his best form, but cripples his top-seven passing yards total with a league-leading 12 interceptions. The next closest are Carson Palmer and Matt Schaub with nine. Yuck.
The Bears defense is a shell of its former self due to injuries and the struggles of aging players like Charles Tillman. “Peanut” finished third at his position in 2012 and sixth in 2011 by Pro Football Focus’ cornerback grades, yet Tillman sits at 94th out of 104 qualifying corners so far in 2013. The safety play has been miserable and there’s little reason to believe Chicago can handle Victor Cruz in the slot. This all explains the “lukewarm” designation on picking the Bears.
If you’ve rode the opposition to cover against New York each week, you’ve won each week. And yet I’m still afraid to do it.
Jay Cutler‘s played very well in all but the game in Detroit this year. You put a good quarterback with two monster talents like Brandon Marshall and Alshon Jeffery, and you get a buzz saw for the Giants secondary.
Big Blue has given up more points through five games than any NFL team in decades. I just can’t roll with a defense that gives up close to 40 points every week, especially when there’s no faith in slowing things down offensively with the run game.
Wilson sitting with the neck sprain is the nudge toward taking Chicago giving eight points.