The Bears come back to Soldier Field fresh off a win in one of the toughest stadiums in the NFL, Qwest Field. Now they play their second straight NFC game and second divisional game of the season.
The Detroit Lions come to town happier than ever, since they finally won a game. The Lions could be without running back Kevin Smith, which could mean they will go to air more than ever. Rookie QB Matthew Stafford has Calvin Johnson and Bryant Johnson as he main weapons. The Lions are definitely a much improved team this season, but that doesn’t mean their actually good.
The Bears are getting tight end Dez Clark back this week, which could be big for the running game because Clark is the best blocking tight end on the roster. Linebacker Lance Briggs (foot), and defensive ends Alex Brown (ankle) and Israel Idonije (knee) were all listed as questionable on Friday’s injury report, but will all play on Sunday. Linebackers Hunter Hillenmeyer (rib) and Pisa Tinoisamoa (knee) will have to wait until after the bye week to play. Hillenmeyer got hurt last week in Seattle and Tinoisamoa got injured in Green Bay during week one. Nick Roach, who started nine games at strong side linebacker played the second half as middle linebacker and will start in the middle against Detroit this week. Jamar Williams will make his second career start filling at strong side linebacker. The Bears said all off-season that they had depth at linebacker, so lets if the replacements can do the job. The Bears should have their way with the Lions, if they don’t get too caught up in themselves.
Players Who Will Step Up:
1) Johnny Knox- He should bring a kick return for a score and have a big day receiving. This kid is a real weapon and the Lions have no one to keep up with his speed.
2) Marcus Harrison- The defensive tackle, who looked like he was going to be a very solid defensive tackle last season, hasn’t done much this year to show that. Expect him to have a break out game, I expect him to have four tackles and a sack.
3) Al Afalava- He nearly had an interception last week. He has looked solid all season and he deserves an interception or two, so watch out for the sixth round steal from Oregon State.
4) Greg Olsen- He has really picked up his game since a miserable performance in Green Bay. He should be all over the field. I’m looking for a touchdown or two out of the former first rounder.
Keys To The Game:
The Bears have to stop one of the best wide receivers in the division Calvin Johnson and must get pressure on the rookie Matthew Stafford. Stafford has the third worst passer rating in the NFL and if the Bears can get in the head he could be even worse. Matt Forte must get off the bus running and have a big day on the ground just to show Bears fans that he is not the next Rashann Salaam or Curtis Enis. Also, the special teams unit must step up and not allow the Lions to start with good field position. Lastly Jay Cutler must play up to the level that his capable of because it’s just fun to see.
Bears 30, Lions 10. Bears Win!