4. The Bears will trot rookie quarterback Mitch Trubisky on Sunday for his third NFL start. What can he expect from the Panthers defense? Will the Bears be able to run the ball on the Panthers defense?
All week the focus for Carolina has been stopping the Bears run game. Veteran defenders Julius Peppers and Thomas Davis have shared their knowledge of Chicago and coach John Fox who continually attempts to establish the run regardless of game situations.
As Trubisky gets more comfortable, Fox will likely open the playbook a little more each week but Carolina’s main focus has to be on containing every rush option from the Bears. New Panthers defensive coordinator Steve Wilks likes to bring pressure and I expect against a rookie quarterback he will try to continually disguise various pressures. If Chicago finds success running the football it will aid in slowing down Carolina’s front seven.
5. It’s prediction time. Please include your game recap and a final score.
Chicago is built around the run and current weather forecast appear to indicate the game could be played in windy and rainy conditions. If so, it will definitely benefit the Bears as Carolina has struggled to create running lanes for the past few weeks. A return of veteran center Ryan Kalil should give the Panthers a boost but they must move the football to keep Chicago from grinding out the clock and shortening the game.
Both teams will have difficulty putting up points but Carolina scores late and holds off the Bears attempt to tie.
Carolina Panthers – 17, Chicago Bears – 10
A big thanks to Brandon from Cat Crave. Be sure to head over there to check out my answers to his questions and get even more of a Panthers perspective on the Bears vs Panthers Week 7 matchup.