Week 9 Preview: Detroit Lions vs. Minnesota Vikingsby John Lepore November 8, 2020 1 comment
The Detroit Lions (3-4) hit the road to face their NFC North rivals, the Minnesota Vikings (2-5). This is a big game as the Lions look to get back to .500 and the Vikings look to stay alive in the competitive NFC playoff race.
Matthew Stafford is set to start today after a week of virtual practice. That’s the good news. The bad news is that the Lions will be without top wide receiver Kenny Golladay. Marvin Jones should see his fair share of work this afternoon, and he likes playing the Vikings. In eight games against Minnesota, Jones has 38 catches for 492 yards and six touchdowns. The Vikings are thin in their secondary already and injuries have hurt them even more. Expect Stafford to take advantage as Minnesota’s defense has allowed over 290 yards passing in five of their seven games this season.
Adrian Peterson will be facing his former team for the first time as a member of the Lions. Last season in Week 8 as a member of the Washington Football Team, Peterson ran for 76 yards on 14 carries and chipped in a couple of catches. All Day should get his share of carries today against the 19th-ranked rushing defense of the Vikings. D’Andre Swift will mix in and see the third-down duties as usual.
Dalvin Cook is coming off his best game in the NFL where he torched the Green Bay Packers for four TDs. He carried the ball 30 times and caught a couple of passes tallying 226 yards from scrimmage. The Lions are not very good against the run allowing 910 yards and 11 rushing TDs (second-most in the NFL). Cook going for 100 yards and a TD is just about a lock this week.
The Vikings leaning on their workhorse seems to be even more likely when you look at Minnesota’s passing game. Kirk Cousins has only one game this season over 261 yards passing and sports an ugly 12/10 TD/INT rate. Adam Thielen and Justin Jefferson have seen the lion’s share, no pun intended, of Cousins’ production. Thielen and Jefferson have accounted for 53.2% of receptions (66 of 124), 61.5% of receiving yards (1,005 of 1,635), and 10 of Cousins’ 12 passing TDs. With Detroit likely trying to stop Cook, the Vikings will need their one-two punch at wideout to produce.
Date: November 8, 2020
Start Time: 1:00 P.M. EST
Location: Minneapolis, MN
Stadium: U.S. Bank Stadium
TV Info: CBS
Betting Odds Sponsored by Jazz Sportsbook
Point Spread: DET +3.5 (-110) | MIN -3.5 (-110)
Moneyline: DET +175 | MIN -205
Over/Under: O 51.5 (-110) | U 51.5 (-110)
This is a tough game to call. While the Vikings secondary is just about non-existent, Golladay is out. I still expect Stafford to be able to exploit Minnesota’s defense along with Peterson and Swift mixing in. Detroit’s defense isn’t exactly dominant and Cook is in a groove. The game will be close and neither defense will be able to stop anyone. Tease Detroit and the over (DET+9.5/ O 45.5).
This matchup will be back and forth, but Stafford will come through in the end and the Vikings will still be winless at home.
Final Score: Detroit Lions 35, Minnesota Vikings 30
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Main Credit Image: Embed from Getty Images