Bookmakers tip the Lions as the favourites to win a high-scoring affair with the Jaguars in week 6. Does the market have it right? Find out as we preview this game and serve up a prediction with NFL picks.
Detroit Lions (1-3-0) vs. Jacksonville Jaguars (1-4-0)
Sunday, October 18, 1:00 PM ET – TIAA Bank Field
TV Network: FOX
NFL Betting Odds and Lines for Lions vs. Jaguars
The lines opened the week 6 clash between the Lions and Jaguars on 1.5-points against the spread with the Lions favoured to win on the road, but since trading began, the NFL line jumped out to Lions -3.5 with multiple top-rated sportsbooks.
The total, meanwhile, was projected on 53.5 points at early doors, but it has climbed up since to 54.5 almost instantly as betting began to come down the wire. A few top-rated sportsbooks like BookMaker have gone as high as 55 points, suggesting a high-scoring affair is on the cards here.
Depending on which way NFL bettors are slicing this matchup for their NFL picks, it’s clear that shopping for the best NFL lines is the smart thing to do because a half-a-point or a point here or there could mean the difference between a winning and losing bet.
Detroit Lions Road Chalk
Flush off a week 5 bye, the Detroit Lions descend on TIAA Bank Field Stadium for a clash with the Jacksonville Jaguars as the road chalk. It marks the second time this season the Lions are in favour after opening the season as the -2.5 faves against the Chicago Bears in week 1 – a game that resulted in a 27-23 loss for the Lions.
It’s fair to say that it’s been another nightmare start to the season for Matt Patricia and the Detroit Lions. Just one solitary victory to show for their efforts is hardly a ringing endorsement of their 2020 campaign, and it amplifies the pressure that they’re surely facing as they prepare for the Jaguars. It also puts Patricia’s job security on the line.
Since the Lions stunned the Arizona Cardinals 26-23 on the road in week 3, to come through with the outright upset as the +4.5 road underdogs, they’ve reverted back to their losing ways behind a 35-29 loss to the New Orleans Saints. Frustratingly, the Lions had jumped out to a 14-0 lead over the Saints before fritting away the lead.
Indeed, that’s the biggest knockback on the Lions this season – essentially, the case during much of Patricia’s tenure with the Lions – is their frustrating inability to hold on to leads in games or close out games convincingly. Against both the Bears and Saints, the Lions had squandered big leads.
Matthew Stafford is having a modest season. He’s not putting up the big numbers that he was at the start of last season, but he’s still playing at a reliable level. Stafford has 1,017 passing yards, 8 TDs to 3 INTs. He has been sacked 12 times and boasts a passer-rating of 93.8.
Fun fact: Stafford has yet to throw a TD in his career against the Jaguars, and should he do so on Sunday, he’ll have recorded a TD against all 31 teams in the league.
On the bright side, the Lions just extended WR Kevin Golladay’s contract to a 4-year-deal worth $65 million. Golladay is Stafford’s favourite target and his return just before the bye made an immediate impact. Now that he’s been paid, he might be rejuvenated and motivated
Jacksonville Jaguars Home Dogs
Jacksonville Jaguars are in dire straits as they ride a four-game losing streak into week 6. All the bonhomie and optimism they earned following an upset win over the Indianapolis Colts in week 1 has evaporated. Gardner Minshew mania too has passed its sell-by-date.
Injuries are a big reason for the Jaguars poor run of form, as well as their underdog status for this game. However, since the beginning of the 2020 NFL season, expectations were always low for the Jaguars. There were some NFL insiders and pundits that believed the Jaguars might tank the season with a view towards scoring in the 2021 NFL draft.
The Jaguars offense has been a hit and miss since week 3. Inconsistency is an issue that is exacerbated by injuries. Going into week 6, the Jaguars may be without WR DJ Clark.
Gardiner Minshew is enjoying a so-so season. He has passed for 1, 439 yards and has 10 TDs to 4 INTs. He’s also been sacked 16 times and boasts a passer rating of 99.4.
The Jaguars have serious problems on defense, as evinced by their stats in a week 5’s loss to the winless Texans. The Jaguars allowed 500 yards in just 58 plays, recording the highest yards per play ratio for the week. The Jaguars are missing C CJ Henderson, DL Josh Allen and LB Myles Jack.
NFL Betting Verdict:
Neither the Lions nor the Jaguars are inspiring much confidence ahead of this week 6 clash, as both teams are dealing with their own set of issues. To be fair, it’s a right tossup for NFL picks across the board.
Push comes to shove, the Lions may have the slight advantage, given the Jaguars appear to be worse off right now than the Lions. Shading the Lions as the -3.5 road chalk therefore is the recommended play. And yet, with all the defensive issues in both camps, as well as the inconsistency on offense, the OVER might be the best (or safest) play of the lot.