The Detroit Lions travel to Tampa Bay this weekend to take on the Buccaneers in an all-NFC clash. Kickoff is at 1:00 PM EST on Sunday, December 10th from Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida. Fans can watch the game on FOX.
Oddsmakers currently have this game listed as a pick’em. However, this will likely change in the 24-48 hours before game-time after more information about the status of Lions QB Matthew Stafford is released. The over/under for the game is set at 41.5 points. Click here for a full list of the Week 14 betting odds and links to more game previews.
Lions vs Bucs Game Betting Preview & Vegas Odds
The Lions fell back to .500 on the season (6-6) after getting dismantled by the Ravens 44-20 last week. To make things even worse for Detroit, QB Matthew Stafford injured his hand in the loss and is currently listed as questionable heading into Week 14. However, he did make several appearances at practice throughout the week and will likely be able to suit-up on Sunday afternoon. Stafford has played well all year long, passing for 3,300+ yards and 22 touchdowns. The Lions have struggled on the ground (31st out of 32 NFL teams in terms of rushing yards per game) without a true workhorse running back – Tion Green, Ameer Abdullah, and Theo Riddick have split reps all season long. They have made up for this through the air, as Stafford has teamed up with Marvin Jones Jr., Golden Tate, and Kenny Golladay to average 259.0 yards per game through the air (6th). On the other side of the ball, Detroit has looked atrocious for most of the regular season so far. The Lions are currently giving up an average of 25.7 points on 360.3 total yards per game (26th).
Despite getting starting QB Jameis Winston back after a three game absence, Tampa Bay couldn’t find a way to hold on against the injury-ravaged Green Bay Packers last weekend. The Bucs had a 4th quarter lead but failed to secure the win before falling 27-20 in overtime. Winston looked slightly above average in his return, passing for 270+ yards while also adding two touchdowns. Second year RB Peyton Barber had a very impressive game, racking up 102 rushing yards on 23 carries. It will be interesting to see how Barber progresses during the final few weeks of the regular season. Defensively, Tampa Bay has struggled with consistency all year long. The Bucs are currently giving up an average of 385.6 total yards per game. They are also allowing opponents to score an average of 24.0 points per game, which is 21st overall.
Free NFL Pick Against the Spread: Tampa Bay (Pick’Em)
Despite the fact that it appears highly likely that Matthew Stafford will start at QB for the Lions this week, I still think that Tampa Bay offers some decent value here at home. Stafford’s throwing hand will be nowhere near 100%, and I’m certainly not expecting him to get any real support on the other side of the ball from one of the NFL’S worst defenses. The Bucs are currently ranked as the 5th best passing attack in the entire league, and will now get an exploitable match-up against the 27th ranked Lions pass defense. Mike Evans, DeSean Jackson, and Cameron Brate/O.J Howard could all have big games on Sunday.
Click on the link for more free NFL betting predictions from our experts on staff.
The Lions are a dreadful 1-5-1 ATS over their past seven games against teams with a losing record at home. They are also just 6-19-1 ATS in their past 26 games in the month of December. More recently, Detroit is 2-5-1 ATS in their last eight games overall. Tampa Bay hasn’t fared much better, going just 2-8-1 ATS in their past 11 games. However, the Bucs have gone 7-2 SU over their past nine home games. I feel as if that trend is highly relevant in this particular spot, as oddsmakers currently have this game listed as a pick’em.
This has the potential to be a highly entertaining match-up, especially when considering the explosiveness of both passing games – and how horrible both teams have played defensively. I wouldn’t be surprised if this turned into a shootout between two very talented receiving corps. However, Detroit has been the slightly worse team defensively all year long and has now given up an average of 30.5 points per game over their last four. Throw in the fact that Stafford will likely be between 70-80% healthy, (at best) and I think that Tampa Bay finds a way to win this one straight up at home.