The Detroit Lions (3-8-1) head to Minneapolis this weekend for an NFC North showdown with the Minnesota Vikings (8-4). Kickoff is set for 1:00 PM EST on December 8th at U.S. Bank Stadium and the game will be televised on FOX.
Oddsmakers opened this game up with the Vikings listed as 13-point home favorites. The spread hasn’t moved at all after early betting, as Minnesota is currently available at -13. The total for this matchup is 43 points. Click here for a full look at the Week 14 NFL odds and for more links to our individual game previews.
Vikings vs Lions Game Odds & Betting Preview
The Lions have now lost five consecutive games after falling 24-20 at home against Chicago on Thanksgiving Day. Detroit jumped out to an early 14-7 lead in the first quarter but couldn’t hold on in the second half, getting outscored 14-3 over the final 30 minutes of the game. QB David Blough played quite well, going 22/38 for 280 passing yards and two touchdowns. Bo Scarbrough led the way on the ground, rushing for 83 yards on a team-high 21 carries. Kenny Golladay torched the Bears secondary, hauling in four receptions for 158 yards and a touchdown. Overall, the Lions generated almost 400 total yards of offense and found the end zone twice despite coming up just short on the scoreboard.
Detroit was average defensively against the Bears, surrendering over 400 total yards of offense and three touchdowns. The Lions couldn’t find a way to slow down Chicago WR Anthony Miller, allowing him to make nine catches for a game-high 140 receiving yards.
The Vikings saw their two game winning streak come to an end in Week 13, losing 37-30 on the road against Seattle on Monday Night Football. Minnesota gave up 17 unanswered points in the third quarter and never recovered, coming up a touchdown short despite outscoring the Seahawks 13-10 over the final 15 minutes of the game. QB Kirk Cousins went 22/38 for 276 passing yards and two touchdowns through the air while RB Dalvin Cook found the end zone despite rushing for just 29 yards on the ground. WR Laquon Treadwell also hit pay dirt, scoring a touchdown on his only reception of the game. As a whole, the Vikings gained over 350 total yards of offense and recorded three touchdowns in the loss.
Minnesota didn’t have a very good outing on the other side of the ball against the Seahawks, giving up over 450 total yards of offense and four touchdowns. The Vikings had no answer for Chris Carson and Rashaad Penny on the ground, as the duo combined for 176 rushing yards and two touchdowns.
Free NFL Betting Predictions and Pick: OVER 43
I’m really not seeing a ton of value with either side against the spread in this NFC North battle, as the spread currently looks pretty accurate for the most part. With Dalvin Cook looking like he will be ready to go on Sunday afternoon after suffering a clavicle injury, I think my favorite play from this matchup is the OVER on 43 total points scored. These two rivals certainly had no problem putting up a boatload of points together when they met back in late October, as the Vikings won a 42-30 shootout after racking up more than 500 total yards of offense and six touchdowns. While I’m certainly not expecting quite that much offense – especially with Stafford sidelined – I do think that the current total looks just a touch low considering how well David Blough performed at quarterback in his first start against the Bears.
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It is also important to note that the total has now gone OVER in five out of Detroit’s last seven games overall. On the other side, the OVER has now come through in six out of Minnesota’s last seven games as well. The Vikings offense has really been firing on all cylinders lately, putting up a very impressive 85 total points over just their last three games combined – almost 30 per outing. While the Lions defense has seemingly improved since mid-November, it is important to note that in their last two games that weren’t against either Chicago or Washington, Detroit gave up a combined 66 total points. I’m going to avoid throwing darts against an efficient spread in favor of the OVER on 43 total points scored in a game the Vikings need to win if they want to catch Green Bay for the division lead.