Last week the NFL Thursday night total pick featured two low scoring teams and a relatively low total set at 40 by the oddsmakers. Of course what we saw was the highest scoring NFL Thursday game in history as the Rams and 49ers combined to double the total in a 41-39 LA win.
With Thursday night’s number coming in at a high 44, it would be easy to take the lead of last week and assume that the short work schedule leads to poor defensive play which means an automatic ‘over’ bet. You’ve got to remember though, the Bears are QB’d by Mike Glennon – but is he alone enough to feel confident in the ‘under’.
Why the Two Teams Could Go ‘Under’ 44 in the NFL Thursday Night Total Pick
The actual spread on the game is Green Bay -7. The public likes Green Bay to the tune of 75% but in a hypothetical Packer blowout does Chicago score enough to go ‘over’ the total? Chicago did get a surprising 23-17 win over Pittsburgh last week but prior to that game their offense was only averaging 12 PPG. The Bears have played under the total in all three games this season and none have broken the 40-point barrier.
Another reason this game could go ‘under’ is because Chicago has the 6th worst pass defense in the league tallying just 183.3 YPG behind the Glennon Gunner. That probably won’t improve tonight because a) Chicago is on the road in a primetime game 2) the Green Bay defense gives up just 183.0 YPG and 3) it’s Mike Glennon. The Bears will want to run the ball with their #8 attack (122.3) but it’s actually Green Bay who are the churners at third in the league in time of possession controlling the ball 32.53 per game.
Why Chicago and Green Bay Could Go Over 44 In the NFL Thursday Night Total Pick
Of course in this matchup Green Bay controlling the ball most of the game could be positive for the over as the Bears go 3 and out 5 straight possessions while the high flying Packer attack builds a 35-0 lead at the half? It’s definitely possible because Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay offense are ranked second in the NFL at 291.3. Green Bay figures to be very pass oriented, not just because they have Rodgers but because the Bears only give up 83.7 YPG on the ground – and the Pack are tied for third last in rushing yards gained per game.
The main question then is if Chicago can put up the points to make the ‘over’ sail? Coming into their week 3 game with the Bears the Pittsburgh Steelers had given up only 116 yards rushing total in two games. Chicago subsequently pounded the ball 38 times for 222 yards behind Jordan Howard and Tarik Cohen. The game showed that even with only 84 yards passing (total) by Mike Glennon, Chicago can score running the ball – and they would’ve had more if the field was only 99 yards.
The NFL Thursday Night Total Pick – What’s the Play?
While this game could definitely go either way, the previous scores do point to a trend:
2013: Bears 27, Packers 20 (47)/ Packers 33, Bears 28 (61)
2014: Packers 38, Chicago 17 (55)/ Packers 55, Bears 14 (69)
2015: Packers 31, Chicago 23 (54)/ Bears 17, Packers 13 (30)
2016: Packers 26, Bears 10 (36) / Packers 30, Bears 27 (57)
Six of eight games have gone over tonight’s 44 points. The M.O for both teams in the NFL Thursday night total pick is going to be opposite – Green Bay needs to stop Chicago’s run and the Bears need to stop Green Bay’s passing game. Crashing the box for the former could leave big plays downfield for the Mike Glennon offense…and the latter doesn’t happen.
Chicago / Green Bay *Over* 44