Chicago (-4) @ San Francisco
Vegas: SF +4
DomModel: SF +10.304
Recommendation: CHI -4
-RG Kyle Long (foot) was injured week 8. He is expected to be out 6-8 weeks, and is an IR candidate with a designation to return late in the season.
-DE Aaron Lynch (elbow) was injured week 15. He is DOUBTFUL for week 16.
-LB Sam Acho (pectoral) was injured during his week 4 game and is on season ending IR.
-S Eddie Jackson (ankle) was injured week 15. He is DOUBTFUL for week 16.
San Francisco 49ers:
-QB Jimmy Garoppolo tore his ACL. He’s out for the season.
-WR Pierre Garcon (knee) was placed on IR 12/10.
-RB Matt Breida (ankle) was injured week 15. This is recurring injury. He was limited in practice Wednesday and Thursday.
-LB Rueben Foster (jail) has been released by the 49ers.
-Slot CB K’Waun Williams (knee) was INACTIVE weeks 14 and 15. He was limited on Wednesday and practiced in full on Thursday.
-CB Ahkello Witherspoon (knee) was injured week 15 and is on IR.
-FS/CB Jimmie Ward (broken forearm) was injured week 12. He is on IR.
-FS Adrian Colbert (high ankle sprain) was injured week 7 and is on IR (effective 10/22).
-S Jaquiski Tartt (shoulder) was INACTIVE weeks 14 and 15. He was limited on Wednesday and practiced in full on Thursday.
When Chicago has the ball:
Offense isn’t exactly the Bears strong point. They rank 22nd in DVOA in total offense and 26th according to PFF. They’re a different style of offense – they pass on just 55% of all plays, which is 7th lowest in the league. Part of this is QB Mitch Tribusky, who tends to have more success as a scrambler than passer. Tribusky’s passing numbers are at 64.9% completion percentage, 2,814 yards, 7.4 yards per attempt, 23 touchdowns, 12 picks. His primary targets are Allen Robinson, Taylor Gabriel, and RB Tarek Cohen. The good news for the Bears is the 49ers perpetually struggle on all things pass defense related. They have zero pass rush outside of DeForest Buckner and nobody has covered well for them this season.
On the ground, the Bears will roll with Jordan Howard as their primary ball carrier. They rank 18th in DVOA against an above average 49ers team that ranks 12th in DVOA.
TL;DR Conclusion: Though Chicago isn’t all that impressive on offense, neither are the 49ers on defense.
When San Francisco has the ball:
I expect the Bears defense to roll into San Francisco and take their stadium by force. Decimated by injury, the 49ers are rolling out 2017 UDFA Nick Mullens. Mullens has had his fair share of solid games, but the defenses he’s faced has been a bit of a joke (OAK -> NYG -> TB -> SEA -> DEN -> SEA). Denver is the only team with a solid pass defense. Meanwhile, poor Nick does not have a single playmaker around him except George Kittle.
And now he has the Bears defense. In case you haven’t heard, they are good at football. They have a superb pass rush (Khalil Mack, Akiem Hicks, Leonard Floyd). They can stop the run with (Akiem Hicks, Eddie Goldman, Danny Trevathan). Their secondary is freakin ridiculous (Kyle Fuller, Bryce Callahan, Prince Amukamara). They will be without S Eddie Jackson, but like, who cares? The Bears are the best defense in football by any metric worth paying attention to.
TL:DR Conclusion: The Bears are good. The 49ers offense is not.
That’s it for now, bitches.