Each week, BringMeTheNews analyzes the Vikings’ upcoming game from both sides, providing “5 reasons the Vikings will win.” This week the Vikings play their final game of the season against the Chicago Bears.
If this is too positive for you, try reading Five reasons the Vikings should be worried about the Bears later today.
5. Bears thinking about axes instead of footballs
Jay Cutler said "everyone could get axed." That's a frightening possibility for the lowly Bears. Seriously, does this quote from Cutler look like one that screams they're ready for some football?
"You chop [the roster] down, chop it down," Cutler said, according to ESPN. "You wonder where those guys go, what happens to them. Some of them never play football again. The situation after the year, it’s gonna be similar. Coaches could leave. Players could leave. I could leave. That’s part of it."
Yeah... we didn't think so, either.
4. The Anti-Zimmer leading the way
Teddy Bridgewater is on fire. But you wouldn't know it if you were looking at him. Bridgewater, even in a loss like last week against the Dolphins, holds his feelings in when he's upset.
“He’s like the anti-me,” head coach Mike Zimmer said of Bridgewater's demeanor, according to Viking Update. “No, he’s very calm all the time. He’s very even-tempered. I’m trying to think if I’ve ever seen him upset that you can visually see and I have not seen it.”
But really, Bridgewater doesn't have much to be upset about. Take a look at the data Paul Charchian dug up; it shows that only Matt Ryan, Aaron Rodgers and Drew Brees have had a better past four games than Bridgewater (Ryan Fitzpatrick didn't start all four games).
3. Cutler's last stand
Cutler is only playing this week because Jimmy Clausen suffered a concussion in Chicago's loss to the Lions last week. Cutler was benched and saved by an injury; but this could be his final game with the team he signed a $126 million contract with last January.
It's getting pretty bad when a writer from the Chicago Sun Times refers a team as being "soul-dead." Cutler has been criticized for years about his lack of emotional leadership. Think Joe Mauer with a constant frown on his face – that's Cutler (they make about the same amount of money, too).
The question is, will he go out with a bang or torch the Vikings like he usually does?
2. Bears might not want to win
Asking players or coaches if losing is better because it improves draft positioning is never a good idea. Regardless, it's a reality and the reality Sunday will be that Chicago could fall out of possible top 10 draft pick if they beat the Vikings. The Chicago Tribune has the breakdown; check it out. Chicago is currently in line to pick seventh.
1. Jared Allen hasn't been much of a factor
The longtime Viking favorite is having a bad year for the Bears. In 10 games this season Allen has only 22 tackles and 2.5 sacks – a far cry from his 22-sack season in 2011.
Allen told reporters this week that he's looking forward to playing against his former team, but because the game won't be in the Metrodome, there won't be a lot of memories in the cold at TCF Bank Stadium.
"It's another game, but it's always exciting to go back and play against the team you came from," Allen said Tuesday, via the Pioneer Press. "It's not playing in the (Metrodome), so it's not like there's memories there. It'll always be fun to go back and play those guys and play back in the city for the first time in front of those fans. I wouldn't call it extra juice; it's another game, but it's always fun."