With the Bears at 6-6 and sandwiched between the Vikings and Packers in the NFC North, the conventional wisdom in Chicago is that they need to win all four games down the stretch to win the division.
So can they do it? With three straight home games ahead (against the Jaguars, Saints and Packers) followed by a season-ending trip to Houston, there's certainly not a game on the schedule that you'd say the Bears can't win. Then again, this is a Bears team that has hovered around .500 all season, with records of 1-1, 2-2, 3-3 and 4-4. Why would a team like that suddenly win four in a row, especially when, at any given time, less than 10 percent of the league is on a four-game winning streak? Right now only three NFL teams are on four-game winning streaks: the Colts, Giants and Buccaneers.
Furthermore, as David Haugh writes in the Chicago Tribune, the Bears haven't won four in a row since 2006, and they haven't even won three of four since the end of that season. It's not realistic for Bears fans to think they'll win four in a row, starting on Sunday.
But there is some good news in Chicago: Nine wins will probably be enough to win the NFC North. This playoff odds report does a computer simulation of the rest of the season, playing the final four weeks 10,000 times. And it turns out that the average scenario has the Vikings winning the division with 8.8 wins. If the Bears can get to nine, that probably gets them in.
Of course, winning nine is no sure thing for these Bears, either. But 3-1 the rest of the way might just get the job done -- which is good news, because 4-0 the rest of the way is probably too much to ask.
Can the Bears Win 4 in a Row? Do They Have to Win 4 in a Row to Make the Playoffs? originally appeared on NFL FanHouse on Thu, 04 Dec 2008 09:41:00 EST . Please see our terms for use of feeds.