As the Chicago Bears are forced to turn to backup quarterback Caleb Hanie in the wake of Jay Cutler's thumb injury, NFL odds makers are a bit more pessimistic about the Bears' chances on Sunday afternoon against the Oakland Raiders. As more information became available on the extent of Cutler's injury, the line has shifted significantly in all respects.
The spread opened with the Bears 1-1/2 point favorites over the Oakland Raiders, but since that time the the line has shifted in favor of the Raiders by 4 points, according to Odds Shark. Furthermore, the over/under has dipped from 46 points all the way down to 41 points, which no doubt has to do with Bears QB Caleb Hanie making his first official NFL start on the road in Oakland. The staff over at SB Nation Bears Bears blog, Windy City Gridiron, expects the gameplan to be heavy on run plays, for a multitude of reasons:
Oh, that's right, the Bears have a backup quarterback. You'd think somewhere this week I'd've heard that. Well, either way. The Raiders aren't a particularly ball-hawky group, and they have faced the fourth-most pass attempts in the league, but they're only allowing 5.7 yards per pass attempt, which is 6th in the league, and 5.2 yards per attempt on the ground, the second worst. They've given up 18 touchdowns and are 20th in pass defense, so look for the Bears to open things up in the red zone, but this could be a Fort Barber game in screens and runs while the Bears ease Hanie in.
For the 7-3 Bears, this game is still every bit as important for their playoff hopes, especially after the Lions fell to the Packers on Thanksgiving day.
Odds Shark has more NFL Week 12 odds and lines. For more on this game, check outBears blog Windy City Gridiron and Raiders blog Silver and Black Pride. Be sure to visitSB Nation NFL for more on Week 12's action.