Late Season Momentum Make Saints the NFL Pick Against Lions

Joe Gavazzi

Monday, December 21, 2015 6:35 PM UTC

Monday, Dec. 21, 2015 6:35 PM UTC

The Lions & Saints collide, scheduled to meet Monday Night, December 21st in the Super Dome . Find out which way the NFL lines lean and what NFL picks we’re lining up.

Detroit Lions vs. New Orleans Saints (-3) 8:30PM ET
This is not exactly the dream matchup that ESPN was hoping for when the Detroit Lions vs. New Orleans Saints were scheduled to meet Monday Night, December 21st in the Super Dome. For tonight, Detroit at 4-9 SU ATS travels to face the New Orleans Saints who stand 5-8 SU, 6-6 ATS. As such, neither of these teams will be invited to the NFL’s post-season party. Furthermore, the outcome of this game will have no impact on those proceedings.


Betting Preview
After an 11-6 SU playoff season of 2014, the Detroit Lions have had a rough go of it in 2015. A 1-7 SU first half of the season, culminated with a (45-10) loss to KC in London. It left front office heads rolling during the bye week with the job of HC Jim Caldwell a matter of speculation. No good was expected when the Lions traveled to Green Bay, where they had lost 24 consecutive years. But, in the most shocking upset of the year, the Lions prevailed (18-16) as 12 point road dog. They used that momentum for consecutive home victories vs. Oakland and Philly. It left them with positive expectations for the rematch with the Packers on their home field. But, when the prayer that was Aaron Rodgers’ Hail Mary was answered in the Detroit end zone, it left the Lions on a downer for the visit to St. Louis last week. The Rams steamrolled the Lions at the point of attack 203-111 and came away with a (21-14) victory. Now, the question becomes whether Detroit can right the ship down the stretch in games against a trio of sub-.500 non-playoff teams. 


Final Analysis
There were positive expectations for New Orleans, as they entered the season with a healthy QB Brees, a stabilized coaching staff led by HC Patyon and hopes for an improved defense. After a 0-3 SU start, in which they allowed 28 PPG, it was apparent that the latter would not come to fruition. Such has been the case the entire year for the Saints, who have the NFL’s worst defense allowing 31 PPG, 416 YPG and 6.7 YP play. That includes 137/5.0 overland.  Fortunately for the Saints today, it is improbable that the worst running game in the league can take advantage. For, Detroit rushes an average of only 22 times per game for 79/3.7. The Saints also have a nice revenge motive working in their favor, as they lost to Detroit (24-23) last season. It was a game they actually led (23-10) in the closing minutes. Last week, the Saints built some positive late-season momentum with a (24-17) win at improved Tampa Bay, in which they outgained the Bucs 388-291. I like that late-season, momentum building victory when playing at home on a Monday Night the following week. Let’s follow that win and the improved New Orleans’ defensive showing in that game to get the victory against a Detroit team who does not have the offense to take advantage of the New Orleans’ weakness. I invite you to put the NFL odds in your favor and join me with my NFL pick with the New Orleans Saints as tonight’s Monday Night NFL Winner.

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