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Nerves could kick in when Chicago host Minnesota

Cody Parkey missed four kicks against Detroit last week
1 of 1

Sky Sports Action, 1.20am Sunday night

NFC North leaders Chicago host Minnesota at Soldier Field in a crunch clash that could have huge playoff implications in the division.

The Bears have a 6-3 record but the visitors are hot on their trail at 5-3-1, and the home fans are likely to be in full voice as head coach Matt Nagy looks to guide them to their first post-season appearance for eight years.

Both teams have shown they can contain the run and are behind only the Saints in terms of yards allowed on the ground per game, so a low-scoring encounter looks possible.

With the strength of both defences this looks like it could have plenty of field-goal attempts, and it may be worth backing at least one of them not to be successful.

Bears kicker Cody Parkey missed two field goals last week along with a further two extra point attempts, with all four kicks rattling the posts.

Reports suggest the 26-year-old's confidence has been rocked as a result, and playing in temperatures projected to be close to zero in the Windy City may not be the best remedy.

Minnesota’s Dan Bailey has had his own kicking struggles with two misses in his last three games, making a failed field goal look more likely than usual.

Recommendations
Under 45 points
1pt 20-23 Coral, Ladbrokes
Field goal to be missed
1pt 11-10 Betway

The lowdown
Venue 
Soldier Field, Chicago, Illinois
Surface 
Grass
Weather 
Partly cloudy, 2C
Vegas handicap 
Chicago -2.5
Vegas points line 
44.5

Team news
Minnesota
Linebacker Anthony Barr (hamstring) is rated questionable. Tight end David Morgan (knee) and safety Andrew Sendejo (groin) have been ruled out. Tackle Mike Remmers (back) and guard Tom Compton (knee) are also injury concerns but star receiver Adam Thielen (back/calf) and cornerback Xavier Rhodes (foot) are expected to play.

Chicago
The Bears are in good shape with tight end Dion Sims (concussion) the only player ruled out.

Key stat
Minnesota have missed six field goals this season.


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Bears kicker Cody Parkey missed two field goals last week, along with two PATs
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