NFC North Win Total Play
It's somewhat hard to tell what we're going to get from the NFC North but we have a win total bet from that division that we like as of right now.
The NFC North is a unique division with quite a few question marks surrounding every team. Green Bay lost Davonte Adams which is a huge loss for them, can they be successful with their receiving core and is their defense better than last year? Detroit is getting a lot of buzz in Dan Campbell's second year but you still have Jared Goff at QB and a very slow defense. Minnesota has a lot of talent on offense but the defense still looks to have a lot of holes. You also have Kirk Cousins still at qb and a first year head coach. Lastly you have Chicago who really didn't do much to improve their team this offseason.
Ryan Pace really gutted this team in his time as the Bear's GM. The offensive line is atrocious which is a huge problem for a team that is trying to develop Justin Fields into an NFL caliber quarterback. The line makes it very difficult for David Montgomery to find success as highlighted by his abysmal 3.8 yds per carry last year. So you have an offense that lacks a running game combined with a quarterback who really isn't a pocket passer and it doesn't look like a recipe for success. Then you add in the lack of playmakers they have at receiver and it's very tough to see Justin Fields making a second year leap for the Bears.
Defensively is where you could count on the Bears over the last few years but since Vic Fangio left there really hasn't been too many positives on that side of the ball either. Nearly all of the players that were key to the defensive success of the Bears are long gone. You don't have much talent on the defensive line outside of Robert Quinn, who has definitely lost a step and is headed into his 13th year in the league. They look like they're going to start two rookies in the secondary which seems like a problem. Roquan Smith is probably their best defensive player without much help anywhere else. Then you have Eberflus coming in, who was really predictable with his schemes in Indy. If he doesn't change his style of defense it will be difficult for him to make up for their personnel deficiencies with play calling and schemes.
The Bears do have a bit of an easy schedule, Warren Sharp had them rated as the 4th easiest schedule in the NFL when the win totals first came out. They get to play the NFC East which would seem like a great draw for them but when we look at it a little closer maybe not so much. All four of those teams are fairly strong up front especially Philly, Washington, and Dallas which is a big problem for the Bears and their porous offensive line. The Bears are currently only favored in two games this season -3 week 3 against the Texans and -2 week 10 against the Lions. You have a couple more toss up games against the Jets and Falcons later on in the season too. If you give the Bears the benefit of the doubt and give them wins against those two teams and give them 2 wins against the NFC East that leaves you at 4. The win total for the Bears is currently sitting at 6.5 juiced pretty heavily to the under, there are a few 6's popping up out there too. Now if you give them a split with Detroit that puts them at 5 which is about exactly where we have them projected, we actually have it at 5.6 so a little over 5.
According to our numbers and the Top Shelf NFL Win Total Model we have them going under the 6.5 win total close to 70% of the time putting our odds of under 6.5 at about -225 so we think there is definitely value in the Bears to go under 6.5 wins even as high as -150. We would also bet under 6 up to even money as we think there is a good chance that things really fall apart and they lose some of those more winnable games.