Mile-high mission

Can the Bears keep the Broncos from shooting down their playoff hopes?

December 08, 2011|By Whizzer, RedEye

I can sympathize with Tim Tebow.

It's hard to be so good at your craft and get nothing but hate from all sides. (At least, I think that's why I get hate mail.)

If he were playing for the Bears in place of the injured Jay Cutler and winning games, Chicago would be lining up to buy the guy drink or two. Wait, does Tebow drink? Or is that a sin?

Unfortunately for the Bears, Tebow is not suiting up in the navy blue and orange. And that, my friends, is a problem.

Tebow is on a miraculous run as the Broncos' quarterback. He is 6-1 as a starter, with 11 touchdowns and only two turnovers. He does most of his damage in the fourth quarter, having engineered three-straight fourth-quarter comebacks for wins.

Can he do it again against the Bears?

Here now, my picks.

Bears at Denver, 3:05 p.m. Fox

Since Tebow is so good at leading the Broncos to comeback wins in the fourth quarter, maybe the way to beat him is to let Denver have the lead as the game winds down. Of course, the Bears would need an offense capable of making a comeback, which they don't right now with Cutler and running back Matt Forte watching from the sidelines. Long story short, it could be a long day, Bears fans.

WHIZZER'S PREDICTION: Broncos 27, Bears 14

Atlanta at Carolina, noon

This just about destroy the Bears' playoff chances. The Falcons are one of the teams vying for the wild-card spot the Bears currently hold. If the Bears lose like my crystal ball says they will and the Falcons win, which they will, the Bears are on the outside looking in. Not even phenomenal rookie quarterback Cam Newton can save the Panthers.

WHIZZER'S PREDICTION: Falcons 30, Panthers 19

Minnesota at Detroit, noon

Adrian Peterson looks like he'll be back on the field for the Vikings. If so, he'll run wild under the temperate skies of the domed Ford Field. The bad part about that is, Peterson is all the Vikings have with quarterback Christian Ponder hurting. The Lions with a resurgent Kevin Smith will win and put another nail in the Bears' playoff coffin.

WHIZZER'S PREDICTION: Lions 34, Vikings 27

N.Y. Giants at Dallas, 7:20 p.m. NBC

You might need a calculator for this game, which looks to be a high-scoring shootout. Giants QB Eli Manning is having a stellar year and the Cowboys' Tony Romo also is playing well. First place in the NFC East is on the line, so both teams will be "all-in," like I am at feeding time.

WHIZZER'S PREDICTION: Cowboys 42, Giants 38

THE REST

Here now, the rest of my picks. Lightning-round-style.

>> Baltimore 24, Indianapolis 13

>> Houston 27, Cincinnati 20

>> Tampa Bay 21, Jacksonville 14

>> Philadelphia 30, Miami 21

>> N.Y. Jets 28, Kansas City 23

>> New Orleans 37, Tennessee 17

>> New England 31, Washington 27

>> San Francisco 34, Arizona 19

>> Green Bay 40, Oakland 24

>> San Diego 26, Buffalo

>> Seattle 21, St. Louis 7

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