Rod Beard of The Detroit News breaks down Thursday's game between the Lions (7-4) and Bears (5-6) at Ford Field (12:30 p.m., CBS, 97.1-FM).
Bears players to watch
Jay Cutler, QB: He's coming off a 130-yard performance against the Buccaneers last week, and helped turn things around with two straight wins.
Matt Forte, RB: He will need to help control the ball and keep Cutler from having to throw too much. He had 89 yards last week.
Brandon Marshall, WR: He won't have to fight any Lions fans, but will have a tough time against the secondary, which has been pretty good.
On a roll: The Lions swept the Bears in both games last year and need this game to try to get back in playoff position.
Don't forget us: The Bears were left for dead during a streak of five losses in six games. A victory could put them back in the playoff discussion.
A feast: The Lions ended their streak of nine straight losses on Thanksgiving last season by drubbing the Packers, 40-10.
Avoiding a slide: Lions coach Jim Caldwell is facing his first mini-crisis, with a two-game losing streak and some questions about the offensive play-calling. How the Lions fare this week could determine how the rest of the season goes.
Back again: Both teams are coming off a short week, with only three days to prepare.
Facts and figures
■In Thanksgiving Day matchups, the Bears lead the series 8-7. The Bears and Lions last played in the holiday classic in 1999, which the Lions won 21-17.
■Cutler is tied for the second-most INTs (12), trailing only Jaguars QB Blake Bortles.
■The Bears are 29th in pass defense, allowing 260.5 yards. The Lions have struggled throwing the ball.
■The Bears are tied for fourth in red-zone efficiency, converting 67 percent. The Lions are among the top teams, allowing scores on about half.
■Scoring will be a battle of attrition, as the Lions are 29th in scoring (17.9 poiunts) and the Bears defense is 31st (27.5 points).