Green Bay Packers at Detroit Lions 9/21/14 NFL Pick, Odds, Prediction
Green Bay Packers (1-1) at Detroit Lions (1-1)
NFL Football: Sunday, September 21, 2014 at 1:00 pm (Ford Field)
The Line: Detroit Lions -2 -- Over/Under: 52 See the Latest Odds
The Detroit Lions host the Green Bay Packers for a divisional matchup in the NFC North in week three.
The Green Bay Packers rebounded in week two as they enter this game at 1-1 on the season. After getting trounced by the Seahawks to start the season, Green Bay looked to be in a precarious position early against the Jets last week, but the team rallied from a 21-3 second quarter deficit to eventually pick up a 31-24 win. QB Aaron Rodgers didn’t have his most efficient outing last Sunday completing 25/42 passes, but he racked up 346 yards and three touchdowns with no interceptions thrown. Jordy Nelson had a monster day as the lead receiver with 209 yards on nine catches with a TD and Randall Cobb also caught five passes while scoring two touchdowns. The Packers running game has yet to take off this year as Eddie Lacy has struggled against elite rush defenses to start the year.
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The Packers defense is extremely vulnerable against the run ranking 31st in the league to start the season while allowing 176.5 yards per game. The pass defense is probably worse than the numbers indicate thus far with the Seahawks establishing an early lead on the Packers in week one and the Jets not being an elite passing offense in a road setting in week two. It would be safe to expect the Lions to have success on offense and for the Packers to win more of a shoot-out style of game if emerging victorious.
The Detroit Lions dominated the New York Giants in week one but were brought back down to earth in week two as the Carolina Panthers defense smothered them in a 24-7 loss. QB Matthew Stafford completed just 56% of his passes last week but in typical fashion accumulated yardage with 291 passing yards with a TD and an INT. Calvin Johnson led all receivers with six catches for 83 yards but in all honesty that’s a mediocre performance out of Megatron given the numbers he has posted over the last five seasons. The Lions backfield didn’t have their best showing in week two with just 70 yards rushing, but we all know what the combination of Reggie Bush and Joique Bell are capable of going against the softer variety of defense they will see this week.
The Lions defense is best known for its ability to get to the quarterback as the team registered five sacks in week two after consistently pressuring Eli Manning in week one despite getting just one sack. Through two weeks of action, the Lions are also stout against the run while allowing just 57.5 yards per game, an edge that figures to surface here given the Packers struggles in the ground game.
The Lions have a knack for shooting themselves in the foot over the past couple seasons which has led to a pattern of underachievement on rosters loaded with individual playmakers. While that theme could certainly present itself here, I will back the home side with a bit of hesitation in a divisional game.