The Minnesota Vikings and Chicago Bears meet for the 99th time tomorrow at Soldier Field. The Bears are 44-52-2 all time against the Vikings. The Vikings destroyed the Bears in the first game in Minnesota last season, but the Bears made the game at Soldier Field worth while for themselves.
Devin Aromashodu had his breakout game of the season against the Vikings in week 16, where he had seven receptions for 150 yards including a 39 yard game winning touchdown catch in overtime. Aromashodu has caught only seven passes this season and he has only been targeted two times in the last five games.
Maybe Aromashdou will get more involved against the Vikings considering he had their defenses number last season. Rookie CB Chris Cook will start in place of Asher Allen for the Vikings and that can only mean good things for the Bears. Cook will be picked on all night by Jay Cutler and the Bears offense.
Exploiting the Vikings secondary with Aromashodu, Knox, Bennett and Olsen will be important for the Bears. They need to establish the running game considering the weather is turning into “Bears weather”, but taking advantage of weaknesses on the Vikings defense will be key.
Jay Cutler saw his offensive line play a little better last week. They did play one of the worst defensive units in the Bills, but they looked improved. Cutler looked improved himself, his ability to scramble out of the pocket and turn a run into a first down was nice to see. Cutler should try to get some of that going again, if he is able to move on the run against Jared Allen and the rest of the Vikings defense.
Don’t expect this game to be a shootout. The Bears defense is much improved and is arguably a top five defense this season. The Vikings defense is very as well. Both the Vikings and Bears have shaky offensive lines. Expect the Vikings to have Jared Allen and Ray Edwards to bring pressure all day long against the weak tackles, Frank Omiyale and J’Marcus Webb. Expect the Bears to bring pressure with Julius Peppers and Israel Idonije all day long against tackles Bryant McKinnie and Phil Loadholt.
The Bears linebackers against Vikings RB Adrian Peterson
Stopping Peterson will be key to a victory for the Bears. Peterson has had great success running the ball against the Bears in the past. Peterson has zero fumbles this season, his last fumble came against the Bears last season in week 16. Hopefully the Bears can change the amount of fumbles Peterson has.
The Bears cornerbacks against Vikings WR Percy Harvin
Percy Harvin is questionable for this game with his continuing migraines, but expect him to play. Tim Jennings and D.J. Moore will most likely see Harvin the most. Harvin has 40 catches for 519 yards and three touchdowns this season, he is also a threat in the return game. Containing Harvin on Sunday is a must for the Bears, because when he gets the ball you never know what he will do with it.
Players Who Must Step Up:
1) Devin Aromashodu- I talked about his breakout game last season against this same Vikings team, but this go around he will be lined up against a rookie cornerback in Chris Cook. Look for him to have his breakout game of this season against the Vikings.
Prediction: Five catches, 56 yards, and one touchdown.
2) Tommie Harris- He showed signs of dominance last season in the week 16 match-up against the Vikings. He showed some signs last week against the Bills as well. Expect him to be a big help in the run defense against Adrian Peterson.
Prediction: Six tackles, 0.5 sack.
3) Chester Taylor- He only had 13 yards on 10 carries against the Bills, but he found his way into the endzone. I expect him to have a big game against his former team. He needs to help the Bears offense stay on the field longer with some solid running.
Prediction: 14 carries, 50 yards, one touchdown.
Who will win?
Bears 20, Vikings 14.
-WR Sidney Rice will appear in his first game all season, he expects to play 10-15 snaps against the Bears.
-The Vikings have also dropped eight of their last nine visits to Chicago.