According to oddsmakers at Bovada.lv, New Orleans is the favorite at home in this game, as the Saints are getting odds of -4.5 points against the Lions. The over/under total for the contest has been set at 50 points. The Lions have actually won three straight in this series and covered the spread in the last two meetings, both in New Orleans. Today’s game takes place from the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans, Louisiana and will air live on FOX.
The Saints are coming off a 20-0 win over the Dolphins in London two weeks ago to improve to 2-3 on the season and 2-3 against the spread. The Saints have won two straight by at least 20 points. After a slow start to the season on offense, the Saints have hit their stride in recent weeks, now averaging 23.3 points and 377.8 yards per game.
Drew Brees has thrown for 1,135 yards and eight touchdowns without an interception. Michael Thomas is the leading receiver with 25 catches for 310 yards and two scores. The team also traded Adrian Peterson during the off time, thinning out their crowded backfield. The New Orleans defense is allowing just 19.5 points while giving up 394.8 yards per game. Their pass defense has struggled, allowing 285.3 yards per game. Cameron Jordan has 19 tackles and three sacks to lead the defense.
The Lions are coming off a 27-24 loss at home to the Panthers to fall to 3-2 on the season. Detroit is 3-2 against the spread as well, covering in both road games as an underdog. The Lions are banged-up and struggling on offense. While Detroit is averaging 24.6 points per game, the Lions are posting just 310.8 yards per game. Matthew Stafford is dealing with an ankle and thigh injury after being sacked 12 times in the last two games. He has thrown for 1,116 yards and nine touchdowns with just one INT. His line is also beat up as Rick Wagner (shoulder) and T.J. Lang (back) are both questionable to play on the right side.
Ameer Abdullah has given the team a slight run game. He has 288 yards and a score this season. Defensively, Detroit is allowing 19.4 points and 349.6 yards per game. The Lions have relied heavily on turnovers, as they have created 11 this season. Glover Quin is leading the unit with 27 tackles, two interceptions and two forced fumbles. The unit did take a blow this week as defensive tackle Haloti Ngata was put on IR with a torn bicep.
Detroit is really struggling up front on both sides of the ball right now. The defensive front isn’t causing much of a pass rush in recent weeks, which isn’t good against Drew Brees. The Lions are also struggling to protect Matthew Stafford, which has led to him being banged-up and off his game. Left tackle Greg Robinson hasn’t been able to get the job done and I think his play will be a big issue again today. The Saints are fresh and playing with confidence after two solid wins. Look for the Saints to keep rolling today.
NFL PREDICTIONS: NEW ORLEANS SAINTS -4.5