This late in the season, it’s all about pride. The Chicago Bears are officially in the midst of a losing season at 4-9. Playoffs simply aren’t an option at this point.
But, in a few days, they get their first crack of the season at the Minnesota Vikings, and it comes on Monday Night Football. These two teams are always an intriguing matchup in prime time, and more often than not, Kirk Cousins is under the spotlight in some fashion.
The Bears love getting after Cousins, and Sunday night they have an opportunity to essentially bury he and the Vikings.
Minnesota is currently the first team out of the NFC Playoff picture at 6-7, but if they were to lose to the Bears, the Vikings would be all but toast.
A win over the Minnesota Vikings would not only be about pride, but putting a division rival to bed for the year.
After playing the Bears, the Vikings then have to host the Los Angeles Rams, followed by traveling to Lambeau Field to take on the Green Bay Packers. If the Bears come out victorious on Monday night, the Vikings drop to 6-8.
It’s hard to imagine the Vikings beating either the Rams or Packers, and they very well could be sitting at 6-10 after those two games. This Monday night matchup is a must-win for Minnesota. They have to win this game in order to have any hope at reaching the postseason.
Even though it’s been a grim season for the Bears, there is reason to believe they can beat Minnesota on Monday night. Believe it or not, the Bears have won five out of the last six over Minnesota, dating back to November 18, 2018.
The key for Chicago is going to be stopping Dalvin Cook, obviously. That’s always the number one priority going against the Vikings. But, then it’s all on Cousins’ shoulders. In seven career games against Chicago, Cousins is 3-4, throwing for an average of 251 yards per game. He’s thrown just nine touchdowns in those seven games, with five interceptions.
Cousins will have a porous Bears secondary to throw against, but he’ll have to get through the NFL’s third-best sack master in 2021, Robert Quinn, who has 14.0 on the year. The Vikings are also looking at the league’s fifth-leading tackler in Roquan Smith. Both of these two have been silver linings in a rather bleak season for Chicago.
it is fair to say that Cousins is, in fact, the most underrated quarterback in football this season, though. He’s got 27 touchdowns to just five interceptions, with an interception on just 1.0 percent of his throws — a career-best.
If Chicago can contain Cook for the most part, and get to Cousins a few times on Monday night, they’ll have a good chance of coming away with the victory — and virtually ending the Vikings’ playoff dreams.