Two NFC North teams are closing out the Week 2 Sunday NFL slate--the Green Bay Packers hosting the Chicago Bears.
Heading into the season, no one expected the Bears to be the 1-0 team between these two, but here we are.
The Packers were man-handled in Week 1 on the road against the Minnesota Vikings, while the Bears won 19-10 over the San Francisco 49ers in a crazy inclement-weather-defining game.
Heading into Lambeau Field, can the Bears still find ways to score? Do the Packers come back in a big way?
Green Bay Packers -10 (-110) at DraftKings
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While the weather was atrocious in Week 1 for the Bears, we caught a glimpse into how this offense will function this season--a run-heavy approach, utilizing quarterback Justin Fields and running backs Khalil Herbert and David Montgomery.
Fields attempted just 17 passes and completed only eight. The only player to receive four targets was Montgomery. The top non-running back was wide receiver Equanimeous St. Brown, who caught a single pass for 18 yards and a score.
The Packers may have had issues covering Justin Jefferson. Still, no receiver on the Bears roster is remotely similar in terms of the damage they can deal.
The Bears offensive line may have played OK in Week 1, but the weather was a factor, and it's doubtful this continues.
Can left tackle Braxton Jones and right tackle Justin Borom really fend off pass rushes from Preston Smith, Rashan Gary, and others? Not likely.
The Packers may have a depleted receiving core, but they'll have Allen Lazard back and continue to get the ball in the hands of running backs Aaron Jones and A.J. Dillon.
Fields should be able to get some things done with his feet, but this mismatch looks like a day of fewer points than Week 1.
Over 41.5 (-110) at DraftKings
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It's a totally different situation than in 2021, but the Packers in 2022 are also coming off an embarrassing, one-sided loss.
Last year, they rebounded, scoring 35 at home with Jones catching three touchdowns.
In their first home game with Rodgers at quarterback, a dynamic rushing attack, Lazard back in the lineup, and the Packers immediately getting tight end Robert Tonyan involved, it wouldn't be shocking to see the Packers post a 30+ point performance.
The loss of wide receiver Davante Adams certainly hurts, but this is still Rodgers. He'll find a way to get it done--the Packers always do.
The Bears secondary has some solid players in Eddie Jackson, Jaylon Johnson, and rookies Kyler Gordon and Jaquan Brisker, but this isn't a unit that will scare Rodgers away from still passing downfield.
If the Packers get left tackle David Bakhtiari back in the lineup, that's just icing on the cake.
A 31-14 finish seems entirely plausible.
Allen Lazard Any Time Touchdown (+200) at FanDuel
After delivering a beautiful 75-yard pass on one of the game's first plays downfield to wide receiver Christian Watson that resulted in a drop, you know Rodgers is excited to have Lazard back in the lineup.
Lazard is easily Rodgers' most trusted receiver, and he'll want to prop him up the best he can in his first game back, especially at home.
With the prediction of the Packers dropping multiple scores in this game, a +200 bet on a Lazard any-time touchdown only seems logical, as he'll be the go-to non-running back for Rodgers.
https://www.cbssports.com/fantasy/football/news/fantasy-football-week-2-sleepers-dfs-allen-lazard-ready-to-take-off-in-green-bay-after-missing-opener/If you've watched Rodgers on the Pat McAfee Show, you'll know that he trusts Lazard and says that the younger receivers have some work to do, which is totally fair.
This feels like a no-brainer, especially against the Bears.
Packers Winning Margin 13-18 (+400) at Caesars
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We're mixing in a new kind of prop bet here, predicting the winning margin.
With our 31-14 prediction, this falls within this bracket as a 17-point differential.
There's no denying the Packers looked pedestrian against the Vikings. Still, much of this has to do with a belief in Rodgers and his track record over his career.
For an elite quarterback, all they do is find ways to prop up the weapons around him. Lazard is back in the lineup. He has two excellent running backs at his disposal against a team with a quarterback who has even worse options than Rodgers but can make things happen with his legs.
The Bears will score some points, but Rodgers will come back with a vengeance as he and the Packers did in 2021.
And hey, the +400 value is never a bad bet idea.
Statistics courtesy of Pro Football Reference and Pro Football Focus (subscription required).
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