Sunday Night Football features an NFC North matchup with major postseason implications as the Detroit Lions (8-8) take on the Green Bay Packers (8-8). The Packers will host this one at Lambeau Field, with kickoff scheduled for 8:20 pm ET.
Currently, the Seattle Seahawks sit in the seventh and final spot for the NFC playoffs. However, both of these teams have avenues to get into the playoffs on Sunday.
For Detroit, they need Seattle to lose earlier in the day to the Rams. If Seattle does lose and the Lions beat Green Bay, Detroit would be in the playoffs.
As for Green Bay, given they beat Seattle earlier in the season, if they beat the Lions, then Green Bay would be in regardless of the Seattle outcome.
The Packers are the favorites playing at home in this one. They are -230 to win, while the Lions’ moneyline sits at +190. The spread features Detroit as 4.5-point underdogs (-110), and the over/under for total points is 49.5.
Lions Looking To Sweep Season Series
After beating the Packers 15-9 earlier in the season, Detroit would love nothing more than to sweep the season series against Green Bay. If Seattle wins earlier in the day, the Lions would be eliminated, but they could still play spoiler while also fighting to finish the season over .500.
Through the first 17 weeks of the season, the Lions’ defense has been pretty bad. They rank 29th in the league in scoring defense, allowing opponents 25.7 points per game. With that said, they only allowed 10 points last week to the Chicago Bears.
On the offensive side, Detroit has prospered. They rank fifth in scoring, averaging 27.1 points per game. Of note, they have been significantly better offensively at home (33.1 points per game) than on the road (19.3 points per game).
Leading the offense is quarterback Jared Goff. He has thrown for 4,214 yards, 29 touchdowns, and just seven interceptions. His favorite receiver has been Amon-Ra St. Brown, who has 100 receptions for 1,112 yards and six touchdowns.
On the ground, the Lions have a two-headed monster in Jamaal Williams (994 yards rushing, 15 touchdowns) and D’Andre Swift (517 yards rushing, 328 yards receiving, eight combined touchdowns).
Win And They’re In For Packers
After starting the season 3-6, many around football wrote the Packers off as a team on the decline. Having won four in a row, though, they are on the brink of the playoffs as they control their own destiny Sunday night.
The Packers’ 14th ranked offense (22.1 points per game) is led by veteran quarterback Aaron Rodgers. While he has not put up MVP numbers, he has still thrown for 3,490 yards, 25 touchdowns, and 11 interceptions.
While many saw a regression coming due to the loss of Davante Adams, Rodgers has found two suitable targets in Allen Lazard (747 yards, five touchdowns) and Christian Watson (507 yards, seven touchdowns).
Most of the Packers’ damage is done on the ground. They are led by Aaron Jones (1,073 yards rushing, two touchdowns) and A.J. Dillon (737 yards rushing, seven touchdowns).
With Detroit’s shaky defense, the Packers should be able to put up points, but the question is whether they can stop Detroit’s offense. Currently, Green Bay ranks 17th in scoring defense, allowing just 21.9 points per game.
Take Green Bay To Win And Cover
This one is a tough one to call. First and foremost, it is worth paying attention to the Seattle game. A win by the Seahawks could deflate the Lions, giving even more of a chance for the Packers to run away with this one.
Even with a Seattle loss, though, Green Bay just seems like they are on a whole different level to end the season. They are 4-1 both straight up and against the spread to end the season, and they are 17-3 in their last 20 home games against the Lions.
The Lions have been a really nice story this year, but expect the Packers to once again be in the playoffs as they should not only win this one, but will likely cover the 4.5-point spread (-110) as well.