Value Bet on Packers Spread vs. Lions for Week 3 NFL Picks

Nikki Adams

Tuesday, September 16, 2014 7:47 PM UTC

Tuesday, Sep. 16, 2014 7:47 PM UTC

It’s gridlock in the NFC North as all teams are 1-1 after two weeks, tied for top spot. Something is going to have to give when the Green Bay Packers descend on the Detroit Lions in week 3 NFL betting.

Backing Green Bay Packers at +1.5 (-110)
Green Bay Packers descend on the Detroit Lions with momentum after a comeback from behind win over the New York Jets in week 2, with which they averted the dreaded 0-2 start on the season. Will they make it two in a row at the expense of the Lions who rolled into Carolina with all the verve and swagger of a punctured tire and quietly lost 24-7.

That the Green Bay Packers avoided two straight defeats augurs well for the chances as a contender this season –only 12% of teams that start 0-2 on the season make it into the playoffs. It didn’t get off to an auspicious start as the Packers found themselves quickly behind on the scoreboard. Struggles against the run were prevalent as they conceded 146 yards to the Jets – not unlike week 1 where they gave up 207 yards to the Hawks. That said Aaron Rodgers rose to the occasion, rallying his offense he connected with his receivers to overturn the early 21-3 deficit and lead the Packers to a comeback from behind 31-24 victory. The MVP quarterback threw three scores and went 24-of-42 for 346 yards.


Backing the Detroit Lions -1.5 (-110)
The Detroit Lions are after a rather lacklustre performance in Carolina, complete volte-face of their opening account against the Giants in which they showboated their way towards a 35-14 routing. Lions were held scoreless in the first half by the formidable Panthers defense. In the second half, they pulled ahead 7-6, but the advantage was fleeting as Cam Newton and the Panthers offense quickly took over on the scoreboard with two unanswered touchdowns and a field goal. Stafford went 27-of-48 for 291 yards and a touchdown (61.3 completion and 93.6 rating on the season). Overall, the Lions accounted for 323 total yards on offense, of which 253 were passing and just 70 rushing.


Packers vs. Lions Betting Tips
The Packers might not have to defend against the rush as much in this game as in their previous two, which could be a blessing in disguise for their defense that has received the brunt of criticism, prompting some NFL bettors to question the Packers et al and their merit as a Super Bowl contender this season. The thinking: how can you be considered if you’re not balanced enough on both sides of the ball? But that’s another debate entirely. Back to the game at hand ... The Lions could take a page from the Hawks and Jets, utilise more of the ground game against the Packers seeing it’s had success against their dubious defense. At the moment, the Lions are 28th in the league with 73.0 yards rushing per game, but that number could seriously improve against the Packers in week 3.

Where the Lions have the edge is the passing game. The Packers will have to deal with a Lions passing game that has been responsible for most of the offense so far – 4th in the league with 297.0 yards per game anchored by the serious threat of Calvin Johnson.  Consider Packers passing game is 13th in the league with 242.5 yards per game and they are 26th in the league with 80.0 yards rushing. Consider the Packers are 11th in the league with 23.5 points per game compared to the Lions (22nd with 21.0 points per game, one could assume the Packers are slightly more efficient converting offense into the only thing that really matters and that is points.


Green Bay Packers at Detroit Lions Trends:
Packers 5-1 SU & ATS last 6 meetings with Lions
Packers 5-2 SU & ATS last 7 road games vs. NFC North
Lions 4-0 ATS last 4 home games vs. NFC North
OVER 4-0 in Green Bay’s last 4 road games vs. NFC North
OVER 4-0 in Detroit’s last 4 home games vs. NFC North
UNDER 4-1 in last 5 meetings at Detroit


NFL Betting Verdict
The last meeting between these two sides saw the Packers routed 40-10 in Detroit, all while Rodgers was sidelined. Earlier in the season, the Packers defeated the Lions 22-9 at home. Lions went 4-4 SU at home last season and 4-2 against division rivals. Packers went 4-4 SU on the road with a 3-2-1 record against division rivals. Very little separated these teams last season as the Packers finished 8-7-1 while the Lions went 7-9. Crucially, these stats have to be taken within context: Rodgers was sidelined for the better part of the Packers season.

The first NFL pick bettors should consider for this game is the Over 52. What we know is the Packers defense has been porous of late (they could do a patch up job before week 3, obviously),  while the Lions passing game is tops in the league and Aaron Rodgers is a clutch quarterback, lethally accurate on a good day. These three separate yet intertwined aspects could combine to deliver a high-octane affair the pushes the totals over 52.

As to the NFL odds on the spread, they are set tighter than an accountant’s purse at just 1.5-points. That close there isn’t much wiggling room for your NFL picks, which means it could go either way. For our money, we’re going with the Packers. If it comes down to a close game and a shootout battle between Rodgers and Stafford, we’re siding with the MVP quarterback Aaron Rodgers because he’s clutch and could prove the difference on the field.

NFL Picks: Packers +1 (+100) and Over 51.5 (-110) at 5Dimes

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