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For nearly six decades, these NFC North Division rivals have had both fans and sports bettors alike in several nail-biting situations. Though the Vikings have a convincing lead in their 116-game series, the rivals have nearly split their victories 50/50 over the past 10 seasons.
The Bears and Vikings have faced each other 20 times over the last decade with Chicago edging out Minnesota 11-9. While this has created many exciting moments for fans, at times, it has been perplexing for sports bettors to get a handle on.
In their last 10 games over the past five seasons, sportsbooks put the Bears as the favorite only twice—once in 2014 and again in 2018—and they covered the spread each time. In the other eight games the Bears played the underdog and covered against the spread four times with one game breaking even.
Despite these teams historically being offensive sluggers, the score has gone under the predicted total seven times, or 70 percent, in the past five seasons.
The Vikings have outright beaten the Bears just six times in their last 10 meetings, despite being the favorites 80 percent of the time. Four of those six victories were at Minnesota’s U.S. Bank Stadium, so home field advantage has certainly played a part in the Vikings’ money line victories.
Bears VS Vikings History
The Vikings and Bears rivalry began in 1961 when Minnesota entered the NFL as an expansion team. In the first-ever game played between the two NFC North rivals, the Bears were the heavy favorites to win but Minnesota convincingly beat Chicago by 24 points.
The Bears and Vikings have only faced each other one time in the postseason in a 1995 Wild Card round; Minnesota beat Chicago both times during the regular season, but the Bears toppled the Vikings 35-18 in the Wild Card game.
Great Bears-Vikings Games
This divisional rivalry has given fans several last-minute victories and shocking upsets.
On Oct. 27, 1968, Minnesota led Chicago 24-23 with three seconds left in the fourth quarter. The Bears kicker, Mac Percival, nailed a 47-yard field goal to seal a Chicago victory.
On Oct. 14, 2007, fans watching these rivals play were not impressed with the near scoreless first quarter, but it would soon turn into a legendary contest.
With two minutes left in the opening quarter, Chicago wide receiver Devin Hester returned a punt for an 89-yard touchdown. To return the favor, and for the final play of the first quarter, Minnesota quarterback Tarvaris Jackson threw a 60-yard touchdown pass to Troy Williamson.
The Vikings had a seemingly comfortable 31-17 lead with five minutes left in the fourth quarter. But Bears quarterback Brian Griese wouldn’t be deterred and passed for two touchdowns to get them back into the game with only 1:38 left in regulation.
Just when Chicago fans were about to celebrate an impressive comeback victory, for the final play of the game, kicker Ryan Longwell hit a 55-yard field goal for a 34-31 Vikings victory.
Infamous Bears-Vikings Moments
Early in the 1985 season, the Bears faced the Vikings without their star quarterback, Jim McMahon, due to back spasms. By the third quarter, Chicago was down 17-9. McMahon talked his way onto the field by convincing coach Mike Ditka that he could still perform and perform he did.
In one of the most famous and dramatic moments in Bears’ history, the star quarterback hurled a 70-yard touchdown pass, followed by a 25-yard touchdown throw on the first play of their next possession, and he led Chicago down the field for a third touchdown to help solidify a 33-24 Bears victory. This impressive outing has affectionately been named McMahon’s Miracle.
It seemed like the Vikings were cursed during their battle with the Bears on Dec. 20, 2010. The game was moved to TCF Bank Stadium because a snowstorm punctured the inflatable roof of the Metrodome, causing it to collapse. Many Minnesota fans viewed this as an omen of things to come.
Vikings quarterback Brett Favre was initially ruled out of the contest, but the legendary signal caller suited up and started. Favre connected a passing touchdown in the first quarter of the game but was also sacked on the play.
The sack resulted in Favre’s head being driven into the ground. It was the only time in his NFL tenure when he was knocked out by a hit, and it was also his very last play in his stunning 20-year career. The Bears toppled the Vikings 40-14 to clinch the NFC North.
On Sept. 15, 2013, Vikings wide receiver Cordarrelle Patterson returned the opening kickoff for a 105-yard touchdown. Chicago led at halftime 24-21, but three unanswered field goals put the Vikings ahead 30-24 in the second half. With only 10 seconds left in regulation, Bears quarterback Jay Cutler threw a game-winning touchdown to Martellus Bennett.
The Vikings hosted the Bears on Nov. 30, 2008, in a game that would arguably produce the most famous play between these rivals. It was a close game in the second quarter with the Bears leading 7-3. In a fourth-and-goal play, Bears running back Matt Forte was stopped at the one-yard line.
Minnesota signal caller Gus Frerotte launched a pass that connected with Bernard Berrian, a former Bear, at the 46-yard line. The wide receiver outran Chicago’s secondary for 54 yards to complete a 99-yard touchdown—the longest play possible involving a forward pass—tying the record for the longest touchdown reception. The Vikings won 34-14 and would eventually win the 2008 division title.
Berrian started his NFL career with the Bears in 2004 and played for them until 2007. He received for 2,197 total yards for 13 touchdowns with Chicago before switching to Minnesota in 2008. With the Vikings, he received for 1,925 total yards for 11 touchdowns.
There have been other famous “double agents” who have played for both the Bears and the Vikings, including defensive end Jared Allen. The talented player set the Vikings’ single season record for most sacks in 2012 with 22.
In the final week of the 2012 season, Minnesota faced their Chicago rivals. Allen sacked quarterback Josh McCown 3.5 times. Allen signed a four-year contract with the Bears in 2014 and finished with 52 tackles, 5.5 sacks, two forced fumbles, and two fumble recoveries.
He was traded to the Panthers in 2015. On Feb. 18, 2016, Allen announced his retirement. Two months later, he signed a one-day contract with Minnesota so he could retire as a Viking.
Defensive tackle Alan Page had an impressive 15-year career with the NFL that began in 1967. He only played for two teams throughout his lengthy tenure with the League: Minnesota and Chicago.
In 1992, the Vikings Hall of Famer became the first African American to be elected as an Associate Justice of the Minnesota Supreme Court, and he received the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2018.
Bears VS Vikings FAQs
- What are the Bears All-Time Record Against the Vikings?
Out of 116 total games played, Minnesota leads the series 60-54-2, winning approximately 70 percent of the games.
- When do the Bears play the Vikings Next?
The NFC North Division rivals meet for the first time this season at 3:25 p.m. on Sept. 29 at Soldier Field.
- When did the Bears First Play the Vikings?
Chicago first played Minnesota on Sept. 17, 1961.
- Who Won the First Meeting Between the Bears and Vikings?
The Vikings beat the Bears 37-13.