-11- Nov. 22 PHILADELPHIA, 7:20 p.m., Ch. 5
2j – Actually a really tough game, D has to prepare for Wildcat/Vick rather than a standard offense. This will be a great test to see where the Bears are really at compared to a tough team from the NFC East. Bears 17, Eagles 13
Kmart – We never play well against McNabb This reminds me of the time me and Jantz got smashed for the 2001 playoff game and McNabb was running all over the field on us while I passed out in sub-zero temperatures. Eagles 30, Bears 27
DC –This will be one of the defining games of the season for the Bears. If the Bears come in with a record as good as I predict with a solid Eagles team coming into town for a night game in November, this one could be a classic. The Bears will have a big advantage coming off a long layoff after the Thursday night game in San Fran. I see the crowd being absolutely vicious and spurring the Bears to a huge victory. Bears 27, Eagles 10
Bears' defense needs to make a stand
Jay Cutler seems to have found a way to keep his bad games from following one another, and while he has struggled in prime time, none of his stinkers have come at Soldier Field.
It stands to reason that the quarterback will bounce back from his rocky five-interception effort last week at San Francisco that pushed this season to the brink as eight NFC teams have more victories than the 4-5 Bears. There is little room for error remaining, and they simply cannot afford to lose another conference game that could come back to haunt them in a tiebreaker.
Chicago Bears suffer from personalities disorder
Because Jay Cutler is being protected from blame in Chicago better than he is from pass rushers, we apparently need to consider other culprits for the Bears' lousy 4-5 start. So let's start with Gaines Adams.
Adams has two assists and a batted pass in limited action since the Bears traded a second-round draft pick to the Bucs for him Oct. 17. But the defensive end's poor production isn't the point. There's no doubt the deal for the fourth overall pick of the 2007 NFL draft will help the Bears in the future.
Just as certain, the trade hurt their present.
Madden Forecast: Eagles secure win on Cutler turnover
The good news: Jay Cutler only throws one interception for the Bears. The bad news: That interception is flipped into the game-winning points for Philadelphia as they beat Chicago 17-10.
Donovan McNabb threw for 374 yards for an Eagles team that consistently moved the ball against the Chicago D, but Philly had trouble scoring touchdowns until the final drive of the game. That's when McNabb hit Jeremy Maclin for a ten-yard TD with a little under two minutes left on the clock, giving the Eagles their sixth win of the season.
For the Bears, the loss drops them to a disappointing 4-6. Talk about a team that is failing to live up to expectations.
Key matchups, predictions: Chicago Bears vs. Philadelphia Eagles
Cutler's struggles at night have been well-documented, with 11 interceptions in three evening contests. His problems have contributed to the Bears' ineptitude in the red zone as they rank 26th in the NFL in that category. Samuel remains among the top corners in the league and is tied for third in the league with five interceptions. The seven-year veteran has had a pick-6 in each of his first six seasons.
LT Orlando Pace vs. DE Trent Cole
Pace said he is fine after suffering a mild concussion against the 49ers, and he'll need to be at his best against the Eagles. The 6-foot-7, 325-pounder laughs at any suggestion that he has problems bending to slow down shorter, quicker defensive ends. Cole (6-3, 270) classifies as such an end, and his 11 multi-sack games are tied for fourth-best in team history. Cole is tied for third in the NFC and tied for eighth in the NFL with 7 1/2 sacks.