Rams vs. Bears: Spread Info, Line and Predictions

Mike HoagCorrespondent IISeptember 21, 2012

ST. LOUIS, MO - NOVEMBER 23:  Matt Forte #22 of the Chicago Bears rushes against Clifton Ryan #95 of the St. Louis Rams at the Edward Jones Dome on November 23, 2008 in St. Louis, Missouri.  The Bears beat the Rams 27-3.  (Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images)
Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images

The Chicago Bears (1-1) will host the St. Louis Rams (1-1) in a Week 3 matchup at Soldier Field.

This matchup is pivotal for both teams. The Bears and Rams find themselves coming off of completely different emotional outcomes to their Week 2 matchups

The Bears are looking to rebound off of a terrible showing against the Green Bay Packers, while the Rams are hoping to translate their win over the Washington Redskins into continued success.

Walking into Soldier Field and shocking a reeling Bears team is exactly what the upset-minded Rams have in mind this weekend. In their Week 1 matchup vs. the Detroit Lions, the Rams led most of the way but were knocked off

Their defense forced three early interceptions from quarterback Matthew Stafford and could be trouble for Jay Cutler if he’s asked to do too much without the help of Matt Forte on Sunday.

Take a look at some betting, fantasy and other outlooks for this Week 3 matchup in Chicago.

Where: Soldier Field, Chicago

When: Sunday, Sept. 23 at 1 p.m. ET

Watch: FOX

Live Stream: DirecTV Sunday Ticket (Pay Service)


Odds: Chicago Bears -7.5 (via BetOnline)

The Rams have spoiled the spread in the first two weeks of the season. Look for them to do it again against the Chicago Bears in Week 3.

After not giving the Rams a chance two weeks in a row, you should take notice now. They aren’t the same pushover team that they have been in years past. Barring a last-second comeback bid from Matthew Stafford and the Lions, the team could be 2-0 with victories over those Lions and the Washington Redskins heading into this matchup.


Over/Under: 43 (via BetOnline)

Go with the under here because of the inconsistency of the quarterbacks and the injuries to Matt Forte and Steven Jackson.

Forty-three points isn’t an incredibly high combined score and will be awfully tempting when placing bets as the week closes out. However, these two teams will struggle to put up points without the effective running games they are used to employing.

Without the added threat of those running games, each team’s competent pass defense will be able to focus more on shutting down the passing attack and getting after each other’s quarterback.


Key Injuries (via CBSSports.com)



Matt Forte


Did not practice. Questionable


Julius Peppers


Did not practice. Questionable




Michael Brockers


Did not practice. Questionable


Matthew Conrath


Did not practice. Questionable


Matthew Daniels


Did not practice. Questionable


Steven Jackson


Did not practice. Questionable


Brit Miller


Did not practice. Questionable


Wayne Hunter


Did not practice. Questionable



Keys to Bears Win: Running Game

The Bears need to get back to the basics of what’s made them a successful team: running the football. Even without Matt Forte, the Bears must find a way to effectively use Michael Bush in the short passing game as well as the rushing attack.

If the offensive line can have some of the pressure relieved off it by creating a competent run game, it will be far better off in pass-protection situations, as the defense wouldn’t able to hone in on Jay Cutler and attack him on sure passing downs.


Keys to Rams Win: Offensive Line Play

Sam Bradford has been beaten and injured throughout his young NFL career. That’s mostly because the team’s offensive line has been unable to consistently protect him from opposing defenses. So far this season, the Rams line has allowed 11 hits and six sacks on Bradford.

This week, Rams backup left tackle Wayne Hunter is nursing an ankle injury that could spell trouble for Bradford in Chicago. Hunter is filling in for the injured Rodger Saffold. If he doesn’t play, there’s little depth on the roster behind him.

Arena Football League veteran Ty Nsheke is next up on the depth chart in that event. 


Prediction: Rams 13, Bears 20

Chicago will ultimately come out on top because of its defense. There aren’t going to be a ton of points scored in this one, but I do like the Bears offense more than I like the threat of the Rams defense.

Until the Rams’ improved secondary can consistently perform well, I’m going to remain skeptical.

As for the Rams offense: If Steven Jackson is limited or not involved in the game plan, Sunday is going to be a nightmare for Sam Bradford against the Bears pass rush.


Mike Hoag is a Breaking News Team writer with Bleacher Report and also covers the Cleveland Browns and the NFL for the site.