By Jason Green
The defending NFC champion Falcons did not make many off-season moves and the big question for them this season is can they get over their epic Super Bowl collapse. They have MVP Matt Ryan and a great offense and while the defense did not rank high last season they are young and brimming with talent. Atlanta went winless in the preseason, but they are ready to go this season and they will try to forget about last season where they had a title and let is slip trough their fingers. Currentlyey they are -6.5 point road favorites at 5 dimes sportsbook.
The Bears had an interesting off-season, as they lost their top WR, threw a lot of money at free agent QB Mike Glennon, and then traded up in the draft to take Mitchell Trubisky with the 2nd pick. It looks as if Glennon will be the starter in this Game and while he has 30 TD and 15 INT his career he only has to appearaNCes since the 2014 season.
Ryan has not lack of weapons at his disposal with one of the best WR’s in the league in Julio Jones, a loaded WR corps in general, and a legit running Game led by Devonta Freeman, who has 3,175 total yards and 27 TD as the lead RB in the last two seasons. Ryan and company will be facing a Chicago defense that ranked in the middle of the pack last season and really struggled to defend the run.
While Ryan has many weapons the same cannot be said about Glennon. The team let Alshon Jeffery walk in free ageNCy and their top WR from last season in Cameron Meredith (66 rec 888 yards last season) is out for the season with a knee injury. Kevin White is the #1 guy and only has 19 catches in his career. In the backfield Jordan Howard had over 1,300 rushing yards last season and he plays behind an offensive line that is one of the best in the league. That line has to deal with Atlanta’s Vic Beasley, who led the league with 15.5 sacks last season.
The Bears were only 3-13 and have an unproven QB under center while the Falcons are coming off a Super Bowl showing and have MVP Matt Ryan and a young and hungry defense. All three of Chicago’s win last season were at home, but they have a lot of issues on both sides of the ball and have a tough hill to climb in their season opener facing a Falcons’ team that is stacked and won the NFC last season.
Key Betting Trends
The Falcons are 8-1 ATS in their last 9 road Games, 5-2 ATS in their last 7 Games overall, and in their last 5 road Games they have an Over record of 3-1-1.
The Bears are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 home Games, 0-7 ATS in their last 7 Games in September, and in their last 14 Games in September they have an Over record of 11-3.
The Bears are 6-2 ATS in their last 8 Games against the Bears.
Jason’s Pick: Ok, so the Bears have covered in Four of their last five home Games, but they have failed to cover in their last seven Games in September. Yeah, the 2nd trend is the one to follow, as Ryan and the Falcons will move the ball at will and while the Bears will put up some points Atlanta will easily win and cover.
Bettorsworld Pick – We agree with Jason here. Had this Game been played a year ago, Our model woud have had the Falcons winning by a score of 42-17. Has that much changed? Doubtful. Providing the Falcons can survive the “Super Bowl Hangover” after an epic choke job, this should be theirs. Falcons -6