Both the Chicago Bears and Carolina Panthers enter today’s game in Bank of America Stadium as two of 16 NFC teams with 2-2 records. The winner today could turn their season around, much like Carolina last season entered Week 5 3-1 and went on to win their next eight straight. Although both teams lost last Sunday, Chicago enters today’s Panthers game with better momentum.
The Bears last Sunday tallied 496 total yards of offense against the Green Bay Packers, 235 of which came on rushing plays. Chicago was trounced 17-38, but their offense showed more signs of life than it had in the first three weeks of the NFL season.
Carolina, meanwhile, ranks 27th in the league against the run, allowing an average of 140.8 yards per game. That could bode well for Chicago running back Matt Forte, who’s racked up 258 yards and a four-yards-per-carry average this season.
The Panther’s best hope lies in quarterback Cam Newton. Ironically, Newton’s also the Panthers’ biggest concern. Last week against the Baltimore Ravens, Newton connected on just 14 of 25 passes for 197 yards and a touchdown, but he was sacked twice and fumbled once.
On Monday, coach Ron Rivera said today’s Bears game could see Newton scramble a bit more, something he hasn’t done much or with much success since returning in Week 2 from offseason surgery. The opportunity is there for Newton to succeed, as the Bears are 20th in both rushing and passing defense.
You can watch today’s Bears game live today at 1pm EST / 10am PST on FOX. You can also watch Bears vs Panthers free online live stream NFL Week 5 using the FOX Sports video website or DirecTV’s website, which requires you to have a subscription to the NFL Sunday Ticket MAX package. All such subscribers can watch the Bears Panthers game online free on a smartphone, tablet or PC.