It’s the Bears versus Cowboys on Thursday Night Football. Both teams sit with a record of 6-6 and are still trying to work their way into the playoffs. The Bears got a glimmer of hope thanks to a loss by the Minnesota Vikings that made a wild card berth still within reach. The Cowboys also got some help as the Philadelphia Eagles lost to the lowly Miami Dolphins.
It should be a good game in the Windy City, but which players will have a big game on Thursday night? The front page writers make their predictions for this week’s X-Factor player of the game.
Tom Ryle: Randall Cobb
It’s going to be a bit cold, and Cobb is one receiver who is no stranger to catching the ball in that kind of weather. I also expect the Bears to be focused on stopping Amari Cooper, or Michael Gallup when Cooper is not on the field. Also, Cobb is pretty familiar with the Chicago defense, which I think leans more in his favor than theirs. If Cobb can have a big day, then the chances for a Dallas win go way up. If not, well, we have to hope the Eagles continue their slide.
David Howman: Travis Frederick
Under new defensive coordinator Chuck Pagano, the Bears have become a blitz heavy unit and with guys like Roquan Smith, Aaron Lynch, and Leonard Floyd flanking Khalil Mack, that creates quite the problem for any offensive line. Since Frederick calls out the line adjustments, he’ll need to be on top of his game in prepping for this kind of attack, and it’ll be difficult to communicate in such a hostile environment, but this is a game that should be decided in the trenches.
Michael Sisemore: Robert Quinn
The Cowboys need their sack-leader to lead the charge this week. The Bears are one of the worst offenses in pass protection. They allow sacks on over 7% of pass plays and that’s been a major reason Mitch Trubisky hasn’t been very effective. The Cowboys need to put pressure on the Bears and take advantage of the matchup. Beat down the opposing offense and it won’t matter that they are on the road. Get sacks and end possessions, that’s Quinn’s calling card. That’s the path to victory for the Cowboys.
Danny Phantom: Xavier Woods
While Cowboys fans were salivating over the pick-six party that rookie safeties were getting last weekend, this week could offer a little bit of redemption if Woods could get one of his own. Bears quarterback Mitchell Trubisky is dying to make a mistake, and it would be so pleasing to the eye to see the Cowboys defense come through with an interception. In a game where defensive play should control the game, look for Woods to get his hands on the ball in this one.
Who do you got?