Thursday, October 23, 2014

NFL Predictions 2014 Week 8: Lions Vs. Falcons

Detroit Lions Vs. Atlanta Falcons: DET -3.5 (Pinnacle)

Market Watch

The look-ahead line had this game at -3.5, but it reopened at the same number once Week 7 action was done. Is there a chance that this goes down to -3?  I'd be surprised. I think this line should be higher, so I'm comfortable laying the hook. So far, about  55% of the action is on the Lions.



Bottom Line

The biggest stat that jumps out at us for this game is the horrendous 0-4 road record for the Falcons. Technically this one is being played in England, but I still consider it a road game for Atlanta.

On the field, things don't look to get much better for the Falcons. Of the 12 statistical categories I look at, they only rank in the top 10 in two of them - red zone offense (but trending down), and special teams. The Lions are not only good in their red zone defense, but they are trending even higher in the last few games.

And let's get real, the only chance Atlanta have this year is if their offense can win them games. That's bad news this week because they face the best statistical defense in the league. Detroit are tops vs the run and pass, drive success rate, and are near the top on third down and in the red zone. Add in all the OL woes for the Falcons, and you have a recipe for disaster.

Things aren't all roses and rainbows for the Lions on the other side of the ball. Stafford is playing like an average QB, the OL is worse than last year, and they can't run the ball. Take comfort though because the Falcons are abysmal on defense. It doesn't matter which category we look at, they are near the bottom of the barrel.

NFL Pick: DET -3.5.

Read moreWeek 8 picks.