It took six years for the Bears to return to this kind of stage at home, that being the NFL’s flagship primetime game in Sunday Night Football with the entire country watching. In their return to #UnderTheLights play as the headline event, they’ll have to hold off the established, confident Vikings to maintain control of the NFC North.
Fortunately, there’s star power galore to make this one very fun. From Khalil Mack and Akiem Hicks, to Harrison Smith and Everson Griffen, this is an even tat-for-tat battle on the lakefront. Easily the most important home game the Bears have played in years with playoff positioning, yes playoff positioning, coming into focus.
Here’s how the staff of WCG sees Bears-Vikings on Sunday night playing out.
Robert Zeglinski: Bears 31 Vikings 28
There’s been a lot of talk about the Bears not having beaten anyone, and well, which vaunted teams have the Vikings beaten? The Bears duke it out with Minnesota in an instant classic and win ... on a last second Cody Parkey field goal.
Lester A. Wiltfong Jr.: Bears 27 Vikings 17
Bears make their national statement by beating the defending NFC North champions behind a stellar game from Mitchell Trubisky and a plethora of sacks by the defense.
Aaron Leming: Bears 27 Vikings 23
Man, this is a tough game to call. On one token, you’ve got history on the Bears side (8-2 at home against the Vikings in their last 10 games) but on the other side, this is such an important game for both teams that anything could happen. I’ll take the Bears in a close one.
Jacob Infante: Bears 26 Vikings 28
I’m expecting this game to be incredibly close since both teams are close to equal in terms of talent, but the Bears fall short as a result of a few plays that don’t go their way.
Jack Silverstein: Bears 34 Vikings 14
Karmic revenge game for “Money Mitch” and the Photo Friends, flipping the script on the last Bears-Vikings game that had true division crown implications for each team, which came 10 years ago this month. Trubisky’s first NFL start was against the Vikings, and he lost by three. Rout coming, folks.
Sam Householder: Vikings 24, Bears 23
This has been marked down as a loss since the day the schedule came out and I have a bad feeling about it. Maybe I’m just fading my colleagues, but coming off their bye and with their defense playing back up to it’s potential, the Bears come up short. That sets up the possibility of a Week 17 winner-take-all match up.
Andrew Link: Bears 34 Vikings 24
This will be another game that looks closer on the scoreboard than in reality. The defense is playing very well and the offense has turned a corner. The indoor Vikings will struggle in a blustery Soldier Field. Big win in the national spotlight.
Josh Sunderbruch: Vikings 24 Bears 20
I did not originally think it was going to be this close, but I think the Vikings are able to exploit the weaknesses in Trubisky’s game while Chicago’s defense is forced to simply limit the damage.
Steven Schweickert: Bears 31 Vikings 24
This is a tight game where Bears fans pick the Bears, Vikings fans pick the Vikings, and we get an awesome game between two hot squads. The Bears’ offense has found a new gear, and Mack announced his return loudly against the Lions. Bring it.
ECD: Bears 27 Vikings 24
This is truly a clash that’ll help determine the Kings of the North. Time to see Trubisky’s development and Mack’s destructive capabilities taken to the next level.
WhiskeyRanger: Bears 27 Vikings 20
Tough divisional game for the Bears. Should be a close one, with top 10 defenses on both sides (Bears and Viking are back-to-back in yards per game, passing yards per game, and rushing yards per game rankings, though Chicago is well ahead in points allowed). The Bears’ surging offense will do just enough at home, to take this one late.
Ken Mitchell: Bears 34, Vikings 21
Soldier Field has been a house of horrors for Minnesota, even over the last decade.
Weird things always seem to happen to the Vikings in Chicago. I expect this year the Vikings are going to suffer Mack things, Hicks things, Roquan Smith and Danny Trevathan things, as well as Kyle Fuller, Prince Amukamara and Bryce Callahan things. With some Floyd on the side.
WCG Contributors: Jeff Berckes; Patti Curl; Eric Christopher Duerrwaechter; Kev H; Sam Householder; Jacob Infante; Aaron Lemming; Andrew Link; Ken Mitchell; Steven Schweickert; Jack Silverstein; EJ Snyder; Lester Wiltfong, Jr.; Whiskey Ranger; Robert Zeglinski; Like us on Facebook.