It’s not a marquee TNF matchup, but it’s intriguing nonetheless. Our friends at FanDuel have your Bears vs. Panthers prediction and more.
This article originally appeared at FanDuel Research.
For how unappealing and not-so-primetime a Thursday Night Football meeting between the Carolina Panthers (1-7) and Chicago Bears (2-7) may sound, there are some interesting storylines between these two teams and, as always, ways we can analyze the matchup to help determine the best bets for this game.
In one of the more major trades in recent NFL history, the Bears sent their number one draft pick to the Panthers in return for D.J. Moore and a slew of draft picks (including 2023 and 2024 first-round picks). Carolina ended up using the hallowed pick to select Bryce Young, Chicago selected Darnell Wright, and now, the Bears are on track to receive the draft position of two bottom-five teams.
As Chicago fans are concerned, it’s a shame that both teams can’t leave tonight with another tick in the loss column. But, either way, the Bears are primed to have a big draft day in 2024 while the Panthers are more concerned with ensuring that Bryce Young can, in fact, be a franchise QB.
Both teams have +2500 odds to make the playoffs and come into the night fairly banged up, but a close spread and potentially lower-than-should-be game total could make this an interesting one to bet on.
The game kicks off at 8:15 p.m. ET and can be streamed on Prime Video.
Panthers vs. Bears Week 10 Betting Odds: Spread, Total, and Moneyline
- Spread: Bears -3.0 (-118)
- Total: 38.5
- Bears: -174
- Panthers: +146
Panthers vs. Bears Week 10 Matchup Analysis
According to numberFire’s nERD-based power rankings, the Bears come into Week 10 as the 27th-ranked team in the league, while the Panthers sit dead-last at the 32nd spot. Chicago’s offense (24th) fares a tad better than their defense (29th) while the Panthers’ offensive rank (29th) is almost identical to their defensive rank (28th).
It’s clear that neither team has much to brag about, so we should be more concerned with finding the respective squads’ most vulnerable areas that have a high exploitation potential.
No team in the NFL has a worse-ranked rush defense than the Panthers. They are allowing 131.8 rush yards per game (28th) and 1.8 rush touchdowns per game (most). Unfortunately for the Bears, they will be without Khalil Herbert tonight, so I’d look for D’Onta Foreman to have a big game on the ground.
The Panthers’ 19th-ranked pass defense may be better than their rush D, but it’s still not much to write home about. Justin Fields will miss his fourth straight game (right thumb), which means Tyson Bagent will once again be handed the pigskin for the Bears. Bagent was OK in his first full start against the Las Vegas Raiders, but in the two games since, he has thrown a towering five interceptions to his two touchdown passes.
Even still, the Panthers are giving up 28.3 points per game (most), and their defense isn’t familiar with forcing turnovers (second-least takeaways in the NFL), so perhaps Bagent can show out while the matchup still allows for it.
The Bears have a rock-solid, first-ranked rush defense. They allow a mere 79.7 rush yards per game (fourth-least), but Carolina might not even notice — the Panthers score 0.3 rush touchdowns per game (30th) and only gain 96.3 yards on the ground per game (24th).
While Chicago’s rush D sits pretty, their pass defense could not be worse. By numberFire’s metrics, they have the worst pass defense in the league (and it’s not particularly close). They allow 256.9 passing yards per game (28th) and more passing touchdowns (2.2) per game than any other team in the league.
This is great news for Bryce Young. He will need all the help he can get after throwing three interceptions in last Sunday’s game against the Indianapolis Colts.
Young’s NFL career couldn’t be much younger, but it’s not a great sign that only Zach Wilson has a lower Passing Net Expected Points (NEP) per drop back added than him. While he’s almost thrown as many touchdowns (8) as interceptions (7) this season, I think he’s due for a big game against a team that lets up 26.9 points per game (28th) and allows the majority of the damage to happen in the passing game.
D.J. Chark (WR) and Stephen Sullivan (TE) will be out for Carolina, so I’d look for players like Adam Thielen, Hayden Hurst, and Chuba Hubbard to take advantage of the Bears’ pass defense.
Defensive injuries for the Panthers include Brian Burns, Marquis Haynes, and C.J. Henderson while the Bears will be without Tremaine Edmunds.
These injuries, plus the fact that eight out of nine Bears’ games this season have surpassed the over (38.5), make it a good play. Two bottom-five defenses will face off tonight, something Chicago has already seen twice this season (Washington Commanders and Denver Broncos). The results of these two games? A 59-point and 60-point game total. I’ll take over 38.5 at -110.
Panthers vs. Bears Prop Bets
Hayden Hurst Over 15.5 Receiving Yards (-110)
The Bears allow 256.9 passing yards per game (fifth-most) and give up 52.78 of those yards to tight ends.
A tight end has grabbed 16-plus receiving yards in every game against Chicago this season, and with Stephen Sullivan out as an option, I am all over Hayden Hurst to clear this prop.
Hurst has hit the over on this prop in five out of eight games this season. He’s averaging 21.25 yards per game. Though his season-long 9.8% target share is super unappealing, he’s had a 16.2% air-yard share (third among available Panther players) in two games since Carolina’s bye week.
Last week, he had a team-leading 29.6% air-yard share. He may not be much of an offensive threat, but he has all the fixings to clear the 16-yard bar tonight.
Chuba Hubbard Over 12.5 Receiving Yards (-110)
From one undervalued Panther receiving prop, we go to the next. Chuba Hubbard has cleared this bar just twice this season, but do not fret.
The Bears allow running backs more receiving yards per game (64.22) than they do rushing yards (63.11).
Hubbard was targeted six times in Week 9, securing four receptions. He should see looks tonight against a team that loves to make sacrifices in the air to running backs, and he won’t need that many to clear the over on this prop.
D’Onta Foreman Over 57.5 Rushing Yards (-110) / Anytime Touchdown Scorer (+115)
Carolina’s worst-ranked rush defense and Khalil Herbert’s absence should afford D’Onta Foreman many opportunities tonight.
Forman has cleared the over on this prop in three out of five games this season, and three out of four games with Herbert out.
The Panthers are allowing 120.0 rush yards per game to running backs, and though Roschon Johnson should eat up some of those yards for the Bears, he’s only had 8 carries to Foreman’s 29 over the last two games.
Not only do I like Foreman’s chances to clear his rushing yards prop, but I also think he has a great chance to find the end zone tonight. No team is giving up more rush touchdowns per game (1.8) than the Panthers, and Foreman has had a 50.0% red zone rush share in four games since Herbert has been out.
— Annie Nader
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