Despite starting the season without a win, the Detroit Lions have been competitive throughout and have some heart-breaking losses from a 60 yard and a 55-yard field goal as time ticks out in recent weeks. Will their luck turn around against a Bengals side, who lost in OT with their kicker missing winning field goals last week? Let’s get into the NFL odds.
Cincinnati Bengals vs. Detroit Lions
Sunday, October 17, 2021 – 01:00 PM EDT at Ford Field
Can the Bengals Bounce Back?
It was a remarkable finish to the Bengals and Packers game last week as the kicker missed 5 field goals in a row at the end of the game. 3 from Mason Crosby of the Packers and Evan McPherson missing 2 for the Bengals. It meant the Bengals fell to their second loss of the season and a 3-2 record coming into this game.
It’s been a positive start to the season for them and I doubt many would have had them with 3 wins at this point especially when their win total was set at 6.5 at the best online sportsbooks, but realistically they could have been 5-0 coming into this, a failed scoop and score hit them vs. the Bears while they had chances to win this weekend as well.
The pickup of Chase in the draft has been essential for them.
Ja’marr Chase is the only wide receiver other than Randy Moss under 21 to have 400+ yards and 5 TDs in the first five games. That’s some fine company, and the connection between Joe Burrow and him was highlighted this week on a broken play where Chase ran across the field to bring in a deep pass and take it to the house.
The wide receiver group should have a big game against this defense and Chase is the leader of that group.
Will the Lions’ Luck Finally Change?
It’s been a painful start to the season for the Lions, but credit to them and new head coach Dan Campbell, he’s had them fighting to the end of all their games without getting the final blow in so far.
A record-breaking field goal from Justin Tucker cost them two weeks ago, and they gave up a speedy 39-second drive this week to lose to a personal-best 55 yarder from Greg Joseph. Dan Campbell was in tears when taking the press conference afterward, such is the stress of being in charge.
It’s a talent-poor roster so to get into a position to lose in heartbreaking ways has been impressive. Jared Goff came over in a trade from the Rams, he’s over 1,300 yards, 7 TDs on the season, but when you look at the people he’s throwing to, that’s not bad really. Although he does need to get his team to over 17 points if they want to start winning.
The running backs and tight ends are the main targets so far this year. D’Andre Swift scored his third TD of the season last week and hauled in all 6 of his targets. He and Jamaal Williams have been sharing carries but Swift seems to get the passing work. While TJ Hockenson has 33 targets through 5 games and should look better after playing through injury last week.
Will the Lions Get a Mark in the Win Column?
It won’t be easy for the Lions and they’ll be hoping Penei Sewell comes back to show the Bengals what they’re missing after over-looking him in the draft to take Chase, but the Lions have been keeping games close but restricting the opposing team’s offense.
With the spread line around a field goal, this is the biggest favorite the Bengals have been since 2016 when they beat the Browns. It’s new territory for Zac Taylor’s team, but they’ve earned it and have looked good for the most part this season on both sides of the ball.
The Bengals have to win games like this if they want to have any chance of a wildcard spot in the AFC and the end of their season schedule is terrible so they need to get some in the bank. Sorry Lions fans, I think it's another week away.
NFL Pick: Bengals -3 (-108)
*The pick reflects the line at the moment the writer made the play, the odds at the beginning of this article show the live line movement. Since the lines might vary, don’t forget to refer back to our live odds.