The Seattle Seahawks looked a lot better on defense with Kam Chancellor on board. But their offense might still be too weak to beat the NFL odds against the Detroit Lions.
Jason's 2015 record as of Sept. 30: 12-7 ATS; 0-1 ML (-1.00 units); 6-9 Total
Kam Chancellor is back, and so are the Seattle Seahawks. The reigning and two-time NFC champions celebrated the return of their Pro Bowl safety by blanking the Chicago Bears 26-0, beating the biggest spread on the NFL odds board as 16.5-point home faves. The Bears were forced to punt on all 10 of their possessions. It was the first time they'd been shut out since 2002.
Now the Seahawks find themselves laying 9.5 points at home against the Detroit Lions on Monday Night Football (8;30 p.m. ET, ESPN). The Lions have been pretty bad this year, honking all three of their games at 0-3 ATS. And go figure, about 60 percent of early bettors are on Seattle, according to our consensus reports, with nearly 70 percent of the money landing on the home side. Easy NFL pick, right?
Tyler Lockett's Temptation
You know better than that. Seattle may have its Super Bowl-winning defense more or less intact, but that offense has a lot of work left to do. The 'Hawks were only up 6-0 on Chicago at halftime, and some fans in the Emerald City were actually booing their heroes. That's cray-cray. Tyler Lockett won them back by returning the second-half kick 105 yards for a touchdown. Jimmy Graham found the end zone 10 minutes later; otherwise, it was four Steven Hauschka field goals.
Have we mentioned how bad the Seattle offensive line is? Russell Wilson ate four sacks, served up by a Bears team that had zero sacks in the first two games. Marshawn Lynch also had trouble loosening up his calf/hamstring and only rushed five times for 14 yards. Lynch had an MRI on Monday and will be re-evaluated on Thursday. It wasn't all doom and gloom, though, as RB Thomas Rawls had 104 yards on 16 carries in Lynch's place.
Fading Seattle would be an easier play against other teams, but the Lions are just not getting it done right now. Matthew Stafford is beat up pretty badly; he went 31-for-45 against the Denver Broncos (–3 away) last week, but also threw two picks as Detroit fell 24-12 at Ford Field. Stafford's performance ranked No. 27 (–66 Total DYAR) at his position in Week 4.
The Lions also took a hit on the offensive line when RG Larry Warford aggravated his high-ankle sprain against Denver and missed most of the game. Alleged super-rookie RB Ameer Abdullah was held to 23 yards on eight carries, although he did catch a 16-yard pass for a touchdown. And if that weren't troubling enough, defenders have reportedly been aware of what plays Detroit is about to run. That's not going to give us much confidence in betting the Leos when we revisit this matchup later in the week.