The Chicago Bears (2-7) welcome the Carolina Panthers (1-7) to Solider Field on Thursday night for a Primetime game that features two teams that will be jockeying for the top pick in the draft -- if the Panthers hadn’t traded their first-round pick to the Bears, that is.
The Bears currently sit at 3.5-point favorites at DraftKings Sportsbook, while the total is set at 40.
Panthers vs. Bears, Week 10: Pick against the spread
The Bears are coming off a 24-17 loss to the Saints in a game where rookie quarterback Tyson Bagent threw for 220 yards, two touchdowns and three interceptions in place of Justin Fields, who missed another game with a thumb injury. That said, Fields could return this week (coach Matt Eberflus said after the game that Fields is “day-to-day”), which is part of the reason this line has moved from 3.5 after opening at 2.5. The Bears also added stud defensive end Montez Sweat at the trade deadline, meaning Thursday’s game could be the first time that Fields (the team’s theoretical quarterback of the future) and Sweat (their defender of the future) take the field together. But the Bears will also improve their draft stock win, lose or draw, as they own Carolina’s first-round pick this season as a part of the Bryce Young trade from last season.
The Panthers are 1-7, coming off a two-touchdown defeat to the Colts and will likely be without Pro Bowl linebacker Brian Burns after he entered into concussion protocol on Sunday.
Young, who the Panthers traded up with the Bears to get, has been average this season, passing for 1,375 yards with eight touchdowns and seven interceptions this season, while running back Miles Sanders (328 yards, one touchdown) has been okay when he’s been able to get on the field.
I’m backing the Bears here, as they’re the more talented team and should get Fields back, which adds an extra layer to Chicago’s offense in what should be the Thursday Night matchup to end all Thursday Night matchups.