Minnesota Vikings vs. Chicago Bears: Preview and Prediction

4 of 5

Nov 1, 2015; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Bears wide receiver Alshon Jeffery (17) scores a touchdown in front of Minnesota Vikings cornerback Xavier Rhodes (29) and free safety Harrison Smith (22) during the second quarter at Soldier Field. Mandatory Credit: Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports

Keys to Victory

Protect Teddy Bridgewater

This is a pretty obvious key to victory because the Vikings’ pass protection has been downright putrid all season, but it will be essential this Sunday against a strong passing defense.

In the scenario that Chicago keeps Adrian Peterson relatively in check (which I don’t think is very likely, but certainly possible,), Minnesota will have to rely on the passing game to move the ball. Against Arizona, the offensive line protected Teddy decently throughout the game until it mattered, when Matt Kalil was spun in circles by a Dwight Freeney spin move.

Bridgewater leads the league in throwaways, and while some blame goes on his receivers for not getting separation, it’s also due to the offensive line’s poor protection that forces him out of the pocket in a matter of a couple of seconds while routes are still developing. The unit needs to be better, period.

Contain Alshon Jeffery

I’ve already touched on this, but I’ll mention it again because I think it’s that important. Jay Cutler has become very reliant upon Jeffery this season when he’s been on the field, and Cutler certainly plays much more comfortably when he can throw to Jeffery confidently.

Rhodes has his work cut out for him for sure, but if he can contain Jeffery this Sunday, Cutler will have a tough time moving this offense down the field.

Next: Vikings vs. Bears - Prediction