The Chicago Bears have a few challenges on their hands as they suit up to play the San Diego Chargers on Monday night. One of them is how to compensate for the loss of the considerable rushing-receiving talents of running back Matt Forte, who is going to be missing from this game with a knee injury. Another is how to put enough pressure on San Diego quarterback Philip Rivers to craft his style as he throws the ball all over the field. All the questions will be answered starting at 8:30 PM ET at Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego, and BetAnySports customers have a special treat, as even after the opening kickoff they can continue to participate in challenging the MNF odds in real-time through the facilities of Live Betting Extra.
The Bears (2-5 SU, 2-4-1 ATS) have won their two games by a total of three points, but both of them have come against AFC West teams – the Oakland Raiders and Kansas City Chiefs. However, going forward without Forte presents an extra headache. After all, this is a guy who caught over 100 passes out of the backfield last year. The guy who will carry the football, for the most part, is Jeremy Langford, a rookie out of Michigan State who has only seen limited action, with 80 yards on the season.
Maybe this will send quarterback Jay Cutler to the air more than usual, but his options are limited there as well, as Eddie Royal is likely to sit this one out with a knee injury. It’s a good thing Chicago has gotten back Alshon Jeffery, who’s had 263 receiving yards in the last two games as he returned from hamstring ailment.
In the reduced juice MNF odds posted on this game by the people at BetAnySports, the Chargers are favored:
Rivers has thrown the ball 348 times on the season, and that has become a necessity because San Diego has not been able to establish the kind of running game they thought they might when they drafted Melvin Gordon in the first round. Gordon has upset the coaching staff with his fumbling, but he was able to touch the ball 23 times last week against Baltimore without coughing it up. His 3.7-yard average is mediocre, and he has been giving way in the backfield to Danny Woodhead, who is the Chargers’ version of Forte, in that he is a top pass-catcher. Woodhead, in fact, leads the NFL in yards after the catch with 476. And he has been a key cog in a Rivers’ drive toward a possible all-time NFL record for passing yards in a season. Peyton Manning set that record with the Broncos in 2013 with 5477, and Rivers, if each stays on his current pace, will have 5506 by season’s end.
BetAnySports patrons have to understand that things won’t be easy for Rivers the rest of the way if he is going to chase that mark. Keenan Allen, who had 67 catches in the first eight games, will have to miss the rest of the season with a lacerated kidney he got last week in the heart-breaking 29-26 loss to the Ravens. So Rivers will have to look in other directions. That’s okay; he still has five other receivers who have caught more than 20 passes, and seven of them have caught at least one touchdown.
But the Chargers are handicapped on the defensive side of the football. Manti Te’o is out with an ankle injury, and Eric Weddle, one of the better safeties in the league, is trying his best to deal with a groin injury amid trade rumors, and is, at best, a game-time decision. San Diego has one of the most ineffective run defenses in the league, allowing five yards per attempt. So maybe Chicago’s rookie can get a little momentum going.
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