Lions vs. Bears prediction, line: Detroit will rally around new coach

It’s almost an auto-play to bet on a team the week after the coach gets fired. I don’t blindly play any angle, but the coaching-change angle is one of my favorites, and it’s 2-0 ATS this season.

Houston fired Bill O’Brien after starting 0-4 SU/ATS, and the Texans (-6.5) beat Jacksonville, 30-14, the next week. Atlanta fired Dan Quinn after starting 0-5 SU/1-4 ATS, and the Falcons (+3.5) hit the road to beat Minnesota, 40-23, the next week. Detroit’s players seemed to welcome the news of coach Matt Patricia getting fired after the Thanksgiving Day massacre, so expect a rejuvenated Lions team this week under the direction of Darrell Bevell.

This matchup in Week 1 was my worst betting beat of the NFL season. The Bears came back from a 23-6, fourth-quarter deficit to win 27-23 on three Mitchell Trubisky touchdown passes. Trubisky is back at the controls of the league’s fourth-worst scoring offense (19.6 ppg). The offensive line is a mess and the rushing attack is weak. Coach Matt Nagy’s speech about the need for Chicago’s coaches and players to “wake up” is unlikely to go over well in the locker room considering Nagy has appeared clueless since the start of the 2019 season.

Matthew Stafford needs more help. Kenny Golladay is still out and D’Andre Swift is listed as questionable. Regardless, I’ll continue to fade the Bears, who have dropped to 5-6 after their phony 5-1 start.

The play: Lions, +3.