NFL Betting – Falcons, Bears clash in Sunday night matchup

by on October 17, 2009

NFL betting is usually related to the strength of a team’s quarterback, and two of the best young pivots in the league will be on display on Sunday night when Jay Cutler leads Chicago into the Georgia Dome to face Matt Ryan and Atlanta, who are coming off a massive win.

Bears vs Falcons odds – Sunday, October 18, 8:20 PM ET

The Bears (3-1) are coming off a bye week, and Cutler is still getting used to the Bears’ system, as proven by their 22nd-place ranking in offense. Matt Forte finally had a 100-yard game in the Bears’ last outing, running for 121 yards and a score in a 48-24 mauling of Detroit. What more impressive is that the defense is holding its own without Brian Urlacher in the lineup, as the Bears are 13th in the NFL, and ninth against the run. A good defense against the ground game is a solid way to boost a team’s offshore sportsbook odds.

The Falcons (3-1) dominated San Francisco in a 45-10 rout on the road, with Matt Ryan going 22-of-32 for 329 yards, two touchdowns and a pick as the Falcons had 477 yards of total offense. Michael Turner found the end zone three times for the Falcons, who were 4-of-5 in the red zone. Defensively, the Falcons gave up just 279 yards and forced three turnovers, taking away the run game and making Shaun Hill try to beat them.

Betting services have the Falcons as a 3-point favorite at home, and last year’s 22-20 win over the Bears at the Georgia Dome was just their second in 10 meetings with the Bears. The Falcons have won nine of their last 10 at home, going 7-3 against the spread during that time. The Bears have lost six of 10 away from Soldier Field, and look headed for another loss this weekend. Cutler has all the talent in the world, but his receiving corps isn’t the best, and they’re all still getting used to each other. The Falcons look like a well-oiled machine, and Ryan has a 98.1 career rating at home, while Cutler’s road rating is 83.0. Go with Ryan and the Falcons in your NFL predictions this weekend.

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