NFL Week 14 Pick: Detroit Lions at Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Matthew Jordan

Wednesday, December 6, 2017 3:24 PM UTC

Wednesday, Dec. 6, 2017 3:24 PM UTC

Better for the Lions to visit Tampa in early December when the weather is nice instead of September when it’s hot and humid. Survivor Pick: Detroit.

Detroit Lions at Tampa Bay Buccaneers (TBA)

No line as of publication because of the status of Detroit quarterback Matthew Stafford, although I’ll just say right now it would be a huge upset if the former No. 1 overall pick doesn’t play in a must-win game. The Lions (6-6) aren’t catching Minnesota in the NFC North but are in the wild-card hunt, currently sitting eighth in the NFC. However, Detroit might have to win out to get that final playoff spot as it is starting to look as if it will take a minimum of 10 wins in the NFC. Stafford injured his throwing hand in last week’s blowout loss to Baltimore – a game in which he set a franchise record by completing 20 straight passes at one point. X-rays taken after the game showed no signs of a broken bone, but Stafford described having “burning nerve pain.” He has started 108 straight games. Now, how effective he might be with that problem in his throwing hand is another matter. Last year in Week 14, Stafford led a come-from-behind win over the Bears that had the Lions in control of the NFC North race. However, during the game Stafford dislocated the middle finger on his throwing hand. The Lions wouldn’t win again, and Stafford’s accuracy was clearly affected as he completed just 60.2 percent of his passes after the injury with five picks in the four games. He’ll play, but won’t be right. That’s why I’m taking the Bucs.

  • Lions are 1-5-1 ATS in their last 7 road games vs. a team with a losing home record.
  • Buccaneers are 7-3 ATS in their last 10 games after allowing less than 150 yards passing in their previous game.
Free NFL Pick: Bucs TBABest Line Offered: Youwager

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If you are wondering, Stafford’s backup is Jake Rudock, who wasn’t even that good in college. Will the Lions have top running back Ameer Abdullah for this one? He was listed as questionable for the Ravens game due to a neck injury but sat out his first game of the year. Abdullah is the Lions' leading rusher with 505 yards and three touchdowns. He also has 20 catches for 133 yards and a touchdown. The Bucs may not have their starting tailback, either, in Doug Martin. He missed last week’s loss in Green Bay with a concussion and probably lost his job, regardless. Peyton Barber blew up against the Packers with 23 carries for 102 yards along with four catches for 41 yards. The week before, Barber’s two touchdown runs were the lone bright spot in a 34-20 loss against the Atlanta Falcons. At 4-8, the rest of this season for the Bucs is basically all about restoring the confidence of supposed franchise quarterback Jameis Winston, who has regressed. He returned from three games on the sideline due to a shoulder injury and had two TD passes vs. the Packers but was sacked seven times and lost a fumble that was returned for a touchdown. "In a perfect world, he would have gotten the ball out of his hands but they were on him quick,” Coach Dirk Koetter said of that play.

  • Under is 7-2 in Lions last 9 vs. a team with a losing record.
  • Under is 7-1 in Buccaneers last 8 home games.
Free NFL Pick: Under TBABest Line Offered: WagerWeb

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