2009 Season NFL Football Past Picks
October 18, 2009
This pick was released to clients on December 31, 1969 at 9:00PM ET.
Chicago at Atlanta
Sunday 10/18 08:20 PM Eastern
4 units on Chicago +4.5 (-110) (risk 4 to return 4) RESULT: LOSS
After dropping their opener, the Bears have rattled off three straight wins. That first game was against Green Bay and lots of people saw Jay Cutler struggle and made up their minds about Chicago. But let's remember - the Bears had four turnovers in that game vs. zero for Green Bay and Chicago only lost by 6 points. Since then, they have beaten Pittsburgh, Seattle and Detroit, covering the spread in all three games. Despite that turnover debacle in game one, they have allowed just 19.5 points per game on the season, while averaging 30 themselves over their last three. Cutler has produced a QB rating of over 100 in each of the last three games, and you have to go all the way back to 1970 to find a QB that has achieved that in a Bears uniform. The three game tally includes a completion rate of over 70%, with seven TD passes and just one INT. I feel the Bears are flying under the radar a bit right now as they have the makings of a good team. The Falcons have been a tough team at home under QB Matt Ryan as he has led them to a 9-1 record as signal caller, but one of those wins was a scant two-point thriller vs. the Bears (without Cutler) last year. If you’re wondering where the Falcons home loss came from, it was against Denver when... you guessed it... Jay Cutler led a fourth quarter drive for a 24-20 Denver win. Atlanta's power running game from a year ago that averaged over 150 yards per game has not gotten on track in 2009. They are averaging just 106 yards per game this season and won't likely get healthy against the Bears ninth-ranked rush unit. The Falcons have had success at home, but still remain 4-12-1 ATS against teams with a winning road record. The public is high on the Falcons after their dismantling of San Francisco last week. But, the Falcons are 8-20 ATS in their last 28 home games following a double-digit win. and they aren't as good as last week would indicate. Cutler got it done here last year and the Bears without him lost by just two points. With an extra week to prepare, I expect the Bears to show up here and keep this one close if not win.