Tuesday 24 September 01:15
After a strong start from the Packers and the Lions, the Bears will be hoping to stay in the NFC North hunt by beating Washington in Monday night’s NFL clash.
Washington edge the rivalry
Two of the oldest teams in the NFL, these rivals first met in 1932, before the Boston Braves moved south to become the Washington Redskins. That game ended in a 7-7 tie, but Washington have had the edge over the last 87 years, winning 26 to the Bears’ 23.
Washington also hold a 4-3 advantage in their play-off meetings, although the last of those came in 1988 when the Redskins prevailed 21-17 in the Divisional Play-Offs. They’ve also won their last six against the Bears, dating back to 2004, although they haven’t met since the 2016 season.
Home side outsiders
Home advantage usually counts for something but despite boasting one of the NFL’s most passionate supporter bases, Washington have a disappointing 35-47 win-loss record at FedEx Field in the last nine seasons. That’s not the only reason why they are 41/20 outsiders with bookmakers for this game. Washington are a strong defensive unit, but Case Keenum is only average at quarterback and he has less protection this time round without Trent Williams.
Bears under pressure
A strong start by the Detroit Lions has made this already-tough Division a lot more challenging and put the Bears under pressure. Their opening Week defeat to the Packers means they have ground to make up, and defeat in this game would leave them at a big disadvantage.
Defensively, they remain one of the strongest teams in the NFL, which helps to explain why they are 4/9 favourites here, but quarterback Mitchell Trubisky continues to divide opinion and has been poor in two games so far this season, particularly last time when they struggled to edge out an ordinary Broncos side 16-14. In a league dominated by free-scoring teams, the Bears look outgunned.
War of attrition
Both teams have strong defenses, but offensively are suspect. The Redskins have no strength at wide receiver and the Bears have an underwhelming quarterback so this game is likely to be a grind, with minimal endzone action, and that will give the underdogs a realistic shot at sneaking a win.