Opening Spread: Lions +1.
Opening Game Total: 53.
Opening Team Totals: Lions (26), Vikings (27).
The Line Report
- This line opened as Lions +1.
- This line has moved to Lions -2.5.
- DraftKings Pick’Em has the Lions -2.5.
- Circa Sports Millions Pro Football Contest has the Lions -2.5.
- This total opened at 53 points.
- This total has moved to 52.5 points.
Lions: Questionable: T Taylor Decker, C Frank Ragnow, RG Evan Brown, LB Derrick Barnes, CB Jeff Okudah, CB Will Harris.
Vikings: Questionable: LT Christian Darrisaw, C Garrett Bradbury, DL Jonathan Bullard, Edge Danielle Hunter, S Harrison Smith.
The Lions Offense vs. the Vikings Defense
I have the Lions tiered as a top-five offensive line. Detroit has three starters on their offensive line listed on the injury report, so keep an eye on that. I have the Vikings tiered as a fringe top-ten defensive front, though that would change if Edge Danielle Hunter missed this contest. The Lions have a mild advantage in the trenches that would increase to a moderate advantage if Hunter is either limited or outright misses this contest. The Lions have still played well without high-end center Frank Ragnow this season, but if Detroit loses left tackle Taylor Decker that would give the Vikings an advantage on the outside.
Betting Notes Per TruMedia
- The Lions are 8-4 against the spread this season.
- The Lions are 8-4 on overs this season.
- Jared Goff is 51-42-2 against the spread in his career.
- Jared Goff is 47-48 on overs in his career.
- The Lions are scoring 26.3 points per game, good for sixth in the league.
- Detroit is ninth in the league in yards passing per game and 11th in yards rushing.
- Per Sports Info Solutions, the Lions are passing on 58% of their plays and running on 42% of plays.
- Jared Goff has breached 300 yards passing in three games this season.
- Per the Edge, Jamaal Williams is 13th in the league in yards rushing with 769, and he’s the leader in rushing touchdowns with 14. Williams has double-digit carries in all 12 games this season, but he only has 12 targets on the year.
- D’Andre Swift has been managing an ankle injury for most of the season, resulting in him seeing seven or fewer carries in all but two of his nine games. Swift’s usage is increasing as he has 14 targets over his last game, paired with a 14-carry spike last week.
- Amon-Ra St. Brown is sixth in the league in receptions (76), 14th in yards receiving (830), tied for ninth in receiving touchdowns (6), and eighth in target share (28.6%) with a 24.4% air yards share.
- DJ Chark returned from injury three weeks ago. Over his past two games, he has 11 total targets, including a 98-yard spike against the Jaguars last week.
- Jameson Williams made his NFL debut last week but only saw one target. We should expect Williams to be eased into the offense over the next several weeks.
- Brock Wright is playing slightly more snaps (42 to 30 last week) than James Mitchell, but Mitchell has a slight edge in routes (12 to 8 last week).
- Per TruMedia, Amon-Ra. St. Brown has played 242 snaps on the perimeter and 273 in the slot.
- DJ Chark has played 229 snaps on the perimeter and 49 in the slot.
- The Vikings have allowed 23.3 points per game, which is 22nd in the league.
- Per The Edge, the Vikings have allowed the 24th-most yards rushing per game and the fifth-most yards receiving per game to running backs this season.
- Minnesota has given up the most yards receiving per game to wide receivers this year.
- Minnesota has given up the third-most PPR points per game to perimeter receivers and the sixth-most to those in the slot.
- The Vikings have allowed the 16th-most yards receiving per game to tight ends this season.
The Vikings Offense vs. the Lions Defense
I have the Vikings tiered as a fringe top-ten offensive line. The Vikings left tackle and center are currently listed on the injury report. Detroit has a below-average defensive front that’s had a few spike games this season. If Christian Darrisaw and Garrett Bradbury are both active for this contest, the Vikings have a mild advantage in the trenches.
Betting Notes Per TruMedia
- The Vikings are 6-5-1 against the spread this season.
- The Vikings are 7-5 on overs this season.
- Kirk Cousins is 69-66-2 against the spread in his career.
- Kirk Cousins is 80-56-1 on overs in his career.
- Kevin O’Connell is 6-5-1 against the spread in his career as an NFL head coach.
- Kevin O’Connell is 7-5 on overs in his career as an NFL head coach.
- The Vikings are scoring 24.1 points per game, which is 10th in the league.
- Minnesota is eighth in the league in yards passing per game and 25th in yards rushing.
- Per Sports Info Solutions, the Vikings are passing on 66% of their plays and running on 34% of plays.
- Per the Edge, Dalvin Cook is fifth in the league in yards rushing with 927. Cook is 17th among running backs in yards receiving.
- Justin Jefferson is third in the league in receptions (88), second in yards receiving (1277), tied for ninth in receiving touchdowns (6), seventh in target share (28.9%), and seventh in air yards share (41.7%).
- Adam Thielen has six or more targets in ten of his 12 games this season. Thielen has breached 60 yards receiving in five games this year.
- K.J. Osborn has a 12.1% target share and a 14.1% air yards share. Osborn’s best game of the season came against the Lions in Week 3, where he had five receptions for 73 yards receiving and a score.
- T.J. Hockenson has six or more targets in all five games as a Viking.
- Per TruMedia, Justin Jefferson has played 563 snaps on the perimeter and 169 in the slot.
- Adam Thielen has played 503 snaps on the perimeter and 201 in the slot.
- K.J. Osborn has played 216 snaps on the perimeter and 352 in the slot.
- The Lions have allowed 27 points per game, which is last in the league.
- Per The Edge, the Lions have allowed the 13th-most yards rushing per game and the second-fewest yards receiving per game to running backs this season.
- Detroit has given up the third-most yards receiving per game to wide receivers this year.
- Detroit has given up the most PPR points per game to slot receivers.
- The Lions have allowed the tenth-most yards receiving per game to tight ends this season.
- The Lions have allowed the most PPR points per game to inline tight ends.
This Is What You’re Betting On in Vikings vs. Lions
The Vikings beat the Lions 28-24 in Minnesota back in Week 3. The Lions had the lead during most of that contest, giving it up late.
A bet on the Lions is a bet on an ascending team that’s won four of their last five games. Over the previous three weeks, the Lions blew out the Giants on the road, gave the Bills all they could handle on Thanksgiving, and blew the doors off the Jaguars 40-14 last week. The Lions have a premium offensive line, a top-ten skill group at full strength, and Jared Goff is a solid NFL quarterback. If you are betting on the Lions, you are primarily betting on their offense at least meeting expectations.
That said, Detroit’s defense has been improving after a brutal first month of the season. The Lions have given up less than 20 points in three of their last five games. While I wouldn’t advise building a bet around Detroit’s defense in this spot, this group is better than the one Minnesota faced earlier in the season. Your biggest concern as a Lions bettor is that they enter this game down a few offensive linemen and thus come out flat against a 10-2 Vikings team.
A bet on the Vikings is a bet on a 10-2 team that is a road underdog against a 5-7 Lions team. As former NFL safety Tank Williams mentioned on Bank it with Tank, there’s a good chance the Vikings locker room isn’t pleased about being viewed as an underdog in this game. Based on need, the Lions are a more motivated team than the Vikings, but that measure of disrespect could have the Vikings more up for this game than they otherwise would be.
From a football standpoint, these two teams are relatively similar. The Vikings have a good NFL quarterback, a dynamic running back, a solid offensive line, a top-ten tight end, and one of the best wide receivers in the league. On defense, the Vikings have a top-ten-level front paired with a secondary that’s been torched this season. If you’re betting on the Vikings, you are betting on their offense, taking care of business against Detroit’s beatable defense. Your biggest concern as a Vikings bettor is that Jared Goff and his Lions have the potential to hang 30-plus points against Minnesota.
Vikings vs. Lions Pool Picks and Other Bets
Awards Market Ramifications: Justin Jefferson is an Offensive Player of the Year contender. Kevin O’Connell is a Coach of the Year contender. Aidan Hutchinson is a Defensive Rookie of the Year contender.
Winner/ Confidence Pool: I will have exposure to both of these teams in winner pools, but I will be a little Lions-heavy. In my confidence pool rankings, I expect to be right around consensus on this contest.
Spread Pool: I bet on Detroit earlier in the week. While I still lean that way, the line movement paired with Tank’s excellent points have limited my enthusiasm on that play.
Survivor Pool: This contest should be avoided in survivor pools.
Ryan’s recent betting record
ATS 2021: 49-31
ATS 2022: 43-22
Props 2022: 42-25
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