The Bears have a must-win game Thursday night. Here's hoping things are less dire in your fantasy league.
If your quarterback is Jay Cutler, you might be in OK shape; Cutler's played well despite the Bears' recent woes (though he didn't produce much in the Browns game, strangely enough). But if you're roster has too many of the following players, your fantasy team is probably not much better off than the Bears themselves. It's must-win time.
Jay Cutler/Stock Rising: The Bears defensive is Cutler's greatest fantasy helper. So long as the Bears are trailing, Cutler will be throwing, and oftentimes throwing deep. This is not good for the Bears, but it is good for Cutler owners. The 49ers' defense is below average against the pass, allowing 241 yards per game. Cutler should be just fine.
Matt Forte/Stock Falling: Forte, on the other hand, will not. Whatever hope fantasy owners had of Forte's value eventually rising to its preseason levels is gone, much like the holes Forte used to run through. This year, week after week, it's the same story: Forte can't break free. Even worse? The 49ers are the fourth-best defense in the league against the run. Don't expect many carries, or many yards, for your would-be franchise back. Sorry.
Greg Olsen/Stock Soaring: After teasing owners all year with his potential, Greg Olsen finally had the breakout fantasy performance most thought he was capable of. Olsen had five catches for 71 yards and three touchdowns, and the touchdowns were deep throws, meaning the Bears aren't going to keep Olsen in short patterns anymore. Don't expect three touchdowns again; do expect Olsen to continue improving his rapport with Cutler. Production is sure to follow.
Devin Hester, Johnny Knox, Earl Bennett: Same old, same old. Don't trust Earl Bennett for anything; only start Devin Hester if your league counts returning yards; only start Johnny Knox if you need to, or if you've got a flex position you're dying to fill. For as good as Cutler has looked at times this year, it hasn't translated into consistent fantasy success for his wideouts.
Eamonn Brennan is a Chicago-based writer, editor and blogger. He is the editor of Yahoo! Sports's college basketball blog The Dagger and a contributor to Inside The Hall. Follow him at his personal site, eamonnbrennan.com, or on Twitter.