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Tips for Schedule Prediction Challenge

Correctly selecting the Bears' opponents in all 16 of their games in the Schedule Prediction Challenge is obviously a tall order. But here are eight tips to help you with your entry:

(1) The Bears typically don't play at home on the same day as the Chicago Marathon, which this year is slated for Sunday, Oct. 9.

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(2) The NFL schedules only division matchups the final week of the season and the Bears have followed the same pattern the past seven years, closing against the Lions, Packers, Vikings, Lions, Packers, Vikings and Lions. If that continues, this year it's the Packers' turn.

(3) The Bears have opened at home the last six seasons. (So it's up to you to decide whether that trend continues or the law of averages sends the Bears on the road in Week 1.)

(4) The Bears have opened new stadiums in Indianapolis in 2008 and San Francisco in 2014. Might they also open Minnesota's new stadium in Week 1 this year? It wouldn't be a surprise.

(5) Then again, the Bears typically play at Minnesota late in the season. Over the last nine years, they've faced the Vikings in Minneapolis on Dec. 17, Nov. 30, Nov. 29, Dec. 20, Jan. 1, Dec. 9, Dec. 1, Dec. 28 and Dec. 20.

(6) The Bears are scheduled to play the Cowboys in Dallas this year. But because the Cowboys share the same parking lots with the Texas Rangers, that game probably won't be on Sept. 19 or Oct. 2 because the Rangers play home games on both of those Sundays.

(7) The Bears have played on Thanksgiving the past two years in Detroit and Green Bay. The NFL wouldn't schedule them on a third straight Turkey Day, would it?

(8) You also have to predict when the Bears' bye week will be this season. The past six years, it's been in the middle of the year during Weeks 7, 9, 8, 6, 8 and 8.

The Schedule Prediction Challenge features the largest sweepstakes prize in Bears history. Fans who correctly guess all 17 weeks of the Bears' 2016 schedule will have a chance to win two tickets to every Bears home and away contest during the season.

The prize includes two round-trip United Airlines flights and hotel accommodations to each away game city and $500 spending cash allowance per regular-season road game ($4,000 total).

Fans can enter the Schedule Prediction Challenge brought to you by United Airlines at ChicagoBears.com/prediction or through the Chicago Bears mobile app. There's a maximum of five entries per person. The contest runs through April 11 at 3 p.m. (CT).

Another entry will be randomly selected to win two tickets to one Bears 2016 regular-season home game of the winner's choice and two tickets to one Bears 2016 regular-season road game of the winner's choice with two round-trip United Airlines flights and hotel accommodations to that road host city along with $500 spending cash.

Click here to enter and for a complete list of rules.

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