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NFC North Week 11 Recap and Updated Futures Odds

As predicted in recent weeks, the Bears have finally and slowly began to expose themselves as they have encountered stiff competition in back-to-back weeks. In each game their offense has failed to score more than seven points, last week in a 13-6 loss against Houston and most recently, last night in a 32-7 beatdown at the hands of a real NFC elite, the San Francisco 49ers.

With the Packers staying hot, defeating a deflated Detroit squad in the final minutes 24-20 this week, Green Bay has now climbed into a tie with Chicago atop the NFC North standings at 7-3. The division, and really one of the league’s surprises, Minnesota stayed a game back with the week off and fading Detroit dropped to 4-6 with the loss, now three games out of the division lead with only six to play this season.

The Bears struggled versus a mobile quarterback last night

Despite enduring a rough beginning to the season, the botched call causing them a loss in Seattle and numerous injuries to stars, including Clay Matthews, the Packers have once again risen to the creme of the crop in not just the North, but the league as a whole. Winners of five straight, the Packers are 7/1 to win the Super Bowl. They started the season as the odds on favorites at 6/1, so considering where they began the season, it’s been an impressive resurgence to power. At this point, their value at 7/1 is pretty good.

Chicago has slightly better odds than when they began the season at 15/1 compared to 16/1, but there’s no doubt that their stock is falling after two straight losses. Granted, Jay Cutler missed the game against San Fran and half of the contest against Houston, but it’s not like he’s been stellar this season anyway. The fact that the Bears still have only mustered one win versus a team over .500 continues to be of great concern for betting in favor of them going forward. The Bears 7-3 record could certainly be looked at as a facade and I wouldn’t be comfortable taking them at 15/1. In fact, I wouldn’t be comfortable taking them at 25/1 right now.

Minnesota is an exciting team considering they started the season at 150/1 to win the Super Bowl and at 70/1 to win the NFC, which was the worst in the entire conference. With a 6-4 record, the Vikings are now 90/1 to win the whole thing and 40/1 to win the conference. With so much tough competition, much of which is in their own division, it will be difficult for the Vikings to sneak their way into the playoffs, but at those odds, it’s low risk high reward and with the way they’ve played so far, it’s certainly within the realm of possibility. Crazier things have happened.

Now the Lions are a different story. While Minnesota has been the division’s pleasant surprise, Detroit has been the utter disappointment. For a team that began the year with a 11/1 chance to win the NFC, the dropoff to 100/1 is staggering to say the least. This is one team to avoid with a ten-foot pole. With the ground they have to make up and the teams they have to make it up against, I wouldn’t put a wooden nickel on the Lions to get the job done.

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