Detroit Lions vs. Green Bay Packers
Date and Time: Monday, November 6, 2017, 8:30 p.m. ET
Location: Lambeau Field
Opening NFL Odds: Lions -2, O/U 43
Lions vs. Packers TV Coverage: ESPN
The Lions got out to a pretty solid start to their 2017-18 campaign. If not for a blown call at the tail end of the home game against the Atlanta Falcons, Jim Caldwell’s squad would’ve gotten out to a perfect 4-0 straight up and against the spread start. Unfortunately, it’s been all downhill since with the team failing to log a win or pointspread cover in its last three games. Though they competed mightily last Sunday night, they ended up falling to the Steelers 20-15 and failed to cover as 3-point home dogs.
Detroit does a number of things well, but it also stinks up the joint in other areas. Offensively, Matthew Stafford is the shot caller for the league’s No. 9 ranked scoring and No. 12 ranked passing offense. That said, the unit is very much so one dimensional with it ranked No. 28 rushing the pigskin. On the other side of the ball, the Lions have grounded opposing rushing attacks ( No. 7 ), but has been an absolute sieve in pass defense ( No. 25 ). The team’s +7 turnover margin has greatly helped its offensive scoring average.
With Aaron Rodgers now out of the mix for the foreseeable future, the rest of the division smells blood in the water. Without their All-Pro quarterback, the Packers are susceptible not only to their division mates, but to the rest of the league as well. Green Bay has gone on to lose each of the two games Rodgers has missed since breaking his collar bone, and it failed to cover as 3.5-point home dogs to New Orleans in its most recent test.
Mike McCarthy’s squad will however return to the Gridiron in Week 9 fresh off a bye. The time off will have no doubt allowed Brett Hundley some extra time to build up a rapport with his pass catchers. Green Bay has won seven of the last eight times it took to the field off a week of rest, but enters this tilt having failed to cover each of the last two times in getting crushed at Denver 29-10 and then pushing the 7-point spread in a 23-16 home win against the Giants.
Player to Watch
Brett Hundley – This is the main guy that will be put under the microscope the remainder of the season. Green Bay still has championship level talent littered throughout its roster, but Rodgers was the straw that stirred the drink. The Hundley era kicked off in fine fashion versus the Saints when he scampered for a 14 yard score to give the home team a brief 14-7 lead, but fizzled as the game wore on and the visitors got more film to break down. He ended up completing just 12 of 25 passes for 87 yards and was picked off once. Against a Detroit defense that concedes nearly 255 passing yards per game, the former UCLA Bruin is going to have to be much better for the Cheeseheads to not fall in successive weeks in front of the hometown faithful.
Lions vs. Packers Picks
The betting public wants absolutely nothing to do with the green and gold on Monday Night Football with over 80 percent of the handle laying the points with the visitors. Though Detroit enters off a physical game with the Steelers, I agree. The Lions have been better away from Ford Field in winning two of their three played games, and while Lambeau has been a house of horrors over the years, they’re no doubt going to relish getting to take advantage of the Rodgers-less Packers. Green Bay’s defense simply just isn’t good enough to squeeze out a tight game, while the Lions have been apt to do so for the last couple seasons now. I laid the points with the Saints a few weeks back at the best NFL sportsbooks, and I’ll be doing it again on Monday night.
NFL ATS Pick: Lions -2.5 at BookMaker.eu
NFL Score Prediction: Lions 21 – Packers 14