The opening week of the NFL season got off to a dramatic start
September 08, 2018 8:26 AM
by Bob Christ
The opening week of the NFL season got off to a dramatic start Thursday when Philadelphia fended off Atlanta at the gun to give the defending champion Eagles an 18-12 victory and the early leg up in the NFC playoff race.
Chicago Bears at Green Bay Packers
Time: 7:20 p.m.
Line: Packers by 7 (47)
Facts: The Bears’ recent trade for LB Khalil Mack, the 2016 Defensive POY, has injected hope into the team, which is coming off four straight last-place finishes in the NFC North. Mack averaged 12 sacks a year from 2015-17 and will be joining a unit that tied for seventh in that category last year with 42... Danica Patrick’s boyfriend, QB Aaron Rodgers, is ready to roll after missing much of 2017 with a shoulder injury. In his past four games vs. Chicago, he’s had 10 TD throws and no INTs... In the games involving rookie bosses, Nagy’s Bears are the biggest underdog. But there’s hope. In 1992, Pittsburgh’s Bill Cowher opened his career with a 29-24 road win vs. the Houston Oilers as a 13-point dog.
Analysis: Chicago’s defense should more than holds its own, and could make this a one-score game, but Mitchell Trubisky isn’t quite ready to for a Jared Goff-like blossoming. He was only the 28th-rated passer last year with 12 TDs and 14 interceptions. In this game, he’ll be going against a Packers secondary that was given a boost by the two early draft picks. And while Trubisky struggled, 2016 running sensation Jordan Howard saw his norm drop from 5-2 to 4.1 a carry last year.
Forecast: Packers 23, Bears 13