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Giants at Bears

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When the Giants started the 2007 season at 0-2, they found a way to rebound from that early hole to eventually clinch a Wild Card spot and upset the unbeaten Patriots in the Super Bowl. This time around, New York found itself in a similar situation at 0-2 after defeats to Dallas and Denver the first two weeks, but the Giants need to dig deep for any shot at saving this season in which they stand at 0-5.

New York heads to Chicago tonight for a battle with a Bears' squad that is trying to end their own losing streak, albeit two games. Chicago jumped out of the gate with a 3-0 record, but consecutive defeats to Detroit and New Orleans the last two weeks have pushed the Bears into a first-place tie with the Lions atop the NFC North.

Many people figured the Bears would hand the Saints their first loss last Sunday with New Orleans playing outdoors and in crummy weather, but that wasn't the case. The Saints held the ball for 36 minutes, while jumping out to a 20-7 halftime lead. Chicago cut the deficit to 26-18 with two minutes remaining in regulation, but couldn't recover the ensuing onside kick and failed to cover as one-point home favorites.

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The Giants are one of three teams that have failed to cover a single game this season (Texans and Steelers the others), while losing each of the last four contests by double-digits. New York dropped its second divisional game of the season last Sunday in a 36-21 home defeat to Philadelphia, as the Giants couldn't hold onto a 21-19 advantage. The Eagles scored the final 17 points of the game in spite of Michael Vick sidelined due to a hamstring injury.

Since scoring 31 points in the Week 1 loss at Dallas, Tom Coughlin's team has been absent offensively on the highway. In defeats at Carolina and Kansas City, the Giants have been outscored, 69-7, hitting the 'under' in two of their three contests away from Met Life Stadium. Since last November, New York has dropped seven straight road games, while not covering once in this span. However, the Giants were never listed as an underdog of this price, as New York routed San Francisco, 26-3 last October as a seven-point 'dog.

The Bears own an 0-2-1 ATS record at Soldier Field this season, which includes comeback victories over the Bengals and Vikings in the first two weeks. Marc Trestman's club overcame a pair of non-offensive touchdowns by Minnesota in a 31-30 triumph in Week 2, while erasing an 11-point second half deficit against Cincinnati in the season opener.

VegasInsider.com handicapper Antony Dinero breaks down Chicago's new offensive philosophy, "Alshon Jeffery set a new Bears franchise record last week and Brandon Marshall didn't pout. Instead, Chicago's No. 1 receiver said his young teammate could be one of the best ever. The Bears bad attitudes have been transformed by Trestman, who continues to open up the offense and will surely have Jay Cutler test the banged-up Giants secondary. If the offensive line helps keep his uniform clean, Chicago's receiving corps should have another big game at the expense of New York's beleaguered defense."

Since Eli Manning arrived as quarterback in New York in 2004, the Giants have split four meetings with the Bears. The Giants are just 1-2 in the last three visits to Soldier Field, which includes a 21-16 victory in December 2007 as a 1 ½-point road favorite. New York's defense dominated Chicago in the last matchup in 2010 at Met Life Stadium, a 17-6 triumph as the Giants knocked out Cutler and held the Bears to 110 yards of offense.

The Thursday night showcase has belonged to the favorites this season as the 'chalk' is 4-1 SU and 3-2 ATS, while the 'over' has hit in three of five opportunities. However, only twice has the home favorite/'over' combination cashed, coming in Week 1 with Denver and Week 5 with Cleveland.

The Bears are listed as 7 ½-point home favorites tonight, while the total is set at 47 ½. The game can be seen on the NFL Network with kick off at 8:25 PM EST from Soldier Field.

You can reach Kevin Rogers via e-mail at rogers@vegasinsider.com

Kevin Rogers can be followed on Twitter at virogers.

  
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