Bears

Bovada gives Bears 40/1 odds to win Super Bowl LI

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Bovada gives Bears 40/1 odds to win Super Bowl LI

Super Bowl 50 is complete and so is the 2015 NFL season, which means it's officially OK to look ahead at the 2016 season.

Bovada released their Super Bowl LI favorites and the Bears were given a 40/1 odds to capture the Lombardi Trophy.

The Carolina Panthers, New England Patriots and Seattle Seahawks top the list at 9/1. The Green Bay Packers and Pittsburgh Steelers follow with a 12/1 odds.

The Bears finished 6-10 in John Fox's first year as head coach in an injury-plagued season.

[SHOP: Gear up, Bears fans!]

The Bears will head into 2016 without offensive coordinator Adam Gase, who signed a five-year contract to coach the Miami Dolphins, and move forward with Dowell Loggains. The Bears may also be without Matt Forte, whose future in Chicago is uncertain.

However, Jeremy Langford showed signs that he's ready to take on the starting role. In addition, the Bears will get Kevin White back, who sat out the entire season with a shin injury.

The offense seems to be in place for next season, but Ryan Pace & Co. may look to improve a defense that ranked 23rd against the pass and 11th against the run.

After seeing the Denver Broncos (16/1 odds) win Super Bowl 50 with a dominating defensive performance, CSNChicago.com Bears Insider John "Moon" Mullin says the templates to be a Super Bowl contender are there for the Bears.

Check out full list at Bovada.com.

Akiem Hicks reveals what makes him so good against the run

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USA TODAY

Akiem Hicks reveals what makes him so good against the run

Akiem Hicks finally earned the recognition he deserved in 2018 with his first trip to the Pro Bowl, and playing on the NFL’s No. 1 defense provided the national attention he should have received in his first two years with the Bears.

He’s a solid interior pass rusher, but where he dominates is in run defense, leading the NFL in run stops last season according to Pro Football Focus.

When Hicks beats an offensive lineman at the line of scrimmage to make a big tackle in the backfield, it’s a work of art, and he revealed the secret to those flashy plays on NFL Game Pass.

He broke down the film of a play against the Green Bay Packers where he beats center Corey Linsley because he knew right guard Jordan McCray was going to pull to the left.

“I read it before the snap happens. I know that McCray is going to pull just based off his stance,” Hicks said. “I know his stance for every play that he’s going to do. I’m going to be at least 75 percent right.”

Hicks looks at how much weight an offensive lineman is putting on his hand, how far apart his legs are and how much bend is in his hips.

“If you do your due-diligence as a defensive lineman and prepare like a professional during the week, you’re going to know,” Hicks said.

Any little deviation from a normal stance is an indicator to Hicks of what the play is going to be, and that pre-snap knowledge keeps him a step ahead of the blocker in front of him.

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Vegas sets Mitchell Trubisky’s pass TD total at 26.5

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USA TODAY

Vegas sets Mitchell Trubisky’s pass TD total at 26.5

If Mitchell Trubisky has the kind of break out year in his second season under Matt Nagy that Bears fans are hoping for, he should have no problem cashing an OVER 26.5 passing TDs ticket for bettors who want to back him.

Per Bet Chicago, Caesars is rolling out division props and they set Trubisky’s touchdown pass total for 2019 at 26.5 and his pass yard total at 3,744.5.

While both those marks would be career highs for Trubisky, this number will surely be seen as a slight by the hometown fans and continue to add to the polarizing nature of the quarterback formerly known as the Pretty Boy Assassin.

In Chicago, and if you’re team Mitch, this number is ridiculously low and you’re probably already pounding the over.

Outside of Chicago, and with some analytical support, there’s a lot of doubt about Trubisky’s future as a viable option as an NFL starter, so I’d guess the Pro Football Focus crowd is probably gonna take the under.

We rolled out some props of our own on the Under Center podcast last week including:

Will Mitch Trubisky pass for 10 or more touchdowns than Craig Kimbrel has saves? (Including playoffs for both)

26.5 regular season passing touchdowns probably gives Kimbrel the edge, but it’s right in range. 

And that Trubisky – Kimbrel prop prompted this bold response from our own Bears insider JJ Stankevitz:

I don’t think I’m in the 40 club with my guy JJ, but the OVER certainly feels like the move here. At least it better be if the Bears are gonna make any sort of NFC North title defense.