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Expert Picks: Bears at Chargers in Week 9

Bears QB Jay Cutler. (AP)

The Chicago Sun-Times’ experts offer their predictions for the Bears’ Week 9 matchup against the Chargers in San Diego on Monday night.

RICK MORRISSEY

Chargers 21-17

I’ve really been enjoying all the stories about the new Jay Cutler, about how he has finally learned to play quarterback after 32 years on this planet, about how he might be the Bears’ quarterback of the future. Call me skeptical. Season: 4-3

RICK TELANDER

Chargers 27-24

The Bears could be easily be 4-3 instead of 2-5. But then a pig could be a bird if it had wings. The Chargers are decimated by injuries, ready for another loss. But the Bears are not good on Monday Night games, and they are a mess on defense. Season: 4-3

ADAM L. JAHNS

Chargers 24-21

This is a very winnable game for the Bears. But I don’t like the Bears’ chances without running back Matt Forte. The Chargers lost receiver Keenan Allen to injury, but quarterback Philip Rivers still should have a productive day against a Bears secondary that has struggled to make plays. Season: 2-5

MARK POTASH

Chargers 31-23

Philip Rivers is susceptible to pressure and he’ll miss No. 1 WR Keenan Allen, but despite making progress under John Fox, the Bears still seem like not-ready-for-prime-time players. With Matt Forte injured, Bears could lean more on Jay Cutler, which could be a boon against a vulnerable Chargers pass defense. Season: 5-2

PATRICK FINLEY

Bears 31-30

The Chargers are awful at home, having lost five of their last nine. And their fan base is staying away, convinced they’re moving to L.A. It’s like the first act of “Major League,” complete with the groundskeeper’s, um, colorful description of the team. Gimme the squad with the most fans there. Season: 5-2