After dropping two straight games, the Washington Commanders will look to get back on the right side of .500 when they host the winless Chicago Bears on Thursday Night Football.
According to NFL odds this week, Washington is up to a 6.5-point (-110) favorite after opening at -4.5. It’s also -300 on the moneyline, while Chicago is +6.5 (-110) on the spread and +250 to win outright. Meanwhile, the projected total is 44.5 (-105 Over, -115 Under).
Read on as we break down both teams in our Bears vs Commanders Preview.
Location: FedEx Field; Landover, Md.
Streaming: Prime Video
The Chicago Bears are 0-3-1 against the spread this season and 0-6-1 over their last seven games. The total has gone Over in 12 of the Bears’ last 15 games. The Washington Commanders, meanwhile, are 3-6 ATS over their last nine games, including 2-2 this NFL season. The total has gone Under in 13 of the Commanders’ last 19 games. That is important to remember when assessing the odds in our Bears vs Commanders preview.
Chicago in Another Mess
After just four games, the Chicago Bears look destined for another lost season. The Bears are 0-4, and former first-rounder Justin Fields has shown major regression at quarterback. As such, the Bears are averaging just 18.8 points per game.
On top of that, there’s been infighting amongst players and coaches. Fields and wide receiver Chase Claypool have already publicly criticized Matt Eberflus’ staff. Based on that, the Bears appear to be beyond saving.
Chicago looked as though it’d gotten off the schneid last week. A 3-point underdog, Chicago led Denver 28-7 late in the third quarter. But the Broncos stormed back with 24 unanswered points, including a 51-yard field goal by Will Lutz to complete the comeback with 1:46 remaining. In the process, the Bears dropped to 0-3-1 ATS this season, matching four other teams for the NFL’s second-worst record. On the same token, the Bears have hit the Over in all four games. At least they’re among the NFL leaders in that regard.
With Chicago’s season already spiraling down the drain, much of the focus remains on Fields. Is he the quarterback of the future? There’s a lot to determine over the next few months. The 2024 NFL Draft is shaping up to be deep at quarterback, and the Bears already hold two first-round picks. Fields is completing 64.2% of his passes but has already been sacked 17 times, third-most in the NFL.
Washington Masking Some Flaws
The Washington Commanders dropped to 2-2 after falling 34-31 in overtime to the Philadelphia Eagles in Week 4. Sam Howell passed for 290 yards and a touchdown but was also sacked five times, raising his NFL-leading total to 24.
Washington has played inspired under head coach Ron Rivera, but it is still far from a contender. The Commanders rank in the bottom half of the NFL in yards per game (307.8) and have turned it over more times (eight) than all but three teams. They are still 2-2 against the spread — Philadelphia was an 8.5-point favorite — but regression could be in store. Keep that in mind when analyzing the odds in our Bears vs Commanders preview.
As it is, oddsmakers remain skeptical of them doing any real damage this season. The Commanders, who were projected for just 7.5 wins, are +275 to make the playoffs. While they’re certainly in far better shape than some others, including Chicago, the Commanders still find themselves behind the likes wild card contenders Seattle (EV) and Green Bay (+110) on the odds board. Heck, even 1-3 Minnesota (+250) has better odds at the moment.
The Commanders could certainly start to improve their case by beating Chicago. A loss would be crushing.
Handicapping the Game
The Bears aren’t only bad, they’re also dysfunctional. It started with Fields criticizing the coaching staff, then continued with Claypool following suit. Now, just four days after blowing a big lead against the lowly Broncos, the Bears are tasked with playing Washington on the road. It’s no small ask.
Now, Washington is a bit banged up. Two of its top receivers in Curtis Samuel (quad) and Jahan Dotson (ankle) landed on the NFL injury report on Monday. That’s certainly worth watching leading up to kickoff.
That said, it’s hard to trust Chicago in this spot. The Bears may cover, but Washington should have little issue getting back in the win column.
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