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NFL Week 16 Lions at Vikings Betting Preview

Detroit Closing In On NFC North Title

Detroit’s magic number is one as they head into the week 16 Lions at Vikings betting matchup. Dan Campbell can help his team complete the turnaround and earn their first ever NFC North title. The Lions haven’t been a division champion since 1994 when they won the then NFC Central.

Minnesota would love to play spoiler on Sunday considering a win keeps them mathematically alive for a division title. The Vikings are also tied in the win column with the Seahawks and Saints for the final wild card spot so this is must-win territory. Oddsmakers still have the Lions as -2.5 favorites on Sunday afternoon in the Twin Cities.

Why the Lions Have Value at -2.5

Detroit can smell their first NFC North title but things start to get a little hairy if the Lions don’t clinch on Sunday. Next week Campbell leads his troops in a tough contest at Dallas, and then the finale is against these same Vikings which could very well still be for the division crown. Detroit would be much better off getting the win, and then resting some players down the stretch if needed.

The Lions offense looked like they were “back” last week in a 42-17 win over Denver. That victory followed a 28-13 loss in Chicago in week 14, but it seems like Detroit has their confidence back as they head to U.S. Bank Stadium.

Detroit ran for 185 yards vs Denver while Jared Goff was dialed in going 24/34 for 278 yards with 5 TD passes. The Vikings will go with Nick Mullens again as their season long QB carousel continues, so the Lions should have the edge at that position on Sunday.

Why the Vikings Have Value at +2.5

Sure Detroit’s offense looked elite against Denver, but it’s also important to note that the Broncos rank 30th in the NFL in total yards allowed (382.4), are the worst against the rush (136.9) and allow the third most points in the league as well. Minnesota on the other hand ranks 12th, 5th, and 6th in those categories respectively so things get a lot harder for the Lions here.

Minnesota has a real good chance of winning this game outright even though Detroit is a solid 5-2 on the road this season – but the Vikings also can cover the +2.5 since they have a tendency to always keep games close. Minnesota is just 1-3 over their last four, but those three defeats have come by a combined 6 points.

Mullens got the start last week and almost led the Vikings to an upset in Cincinnati before falling 27-24 in OT. His 2 INTs weren’t ideal, but otherwise the QB hit on 26/33 passes for 303 yards with 2 TDs. Jordan Addison and Justin Jefferson both had 84+ yards receiving and the Vikings may have found a workhorse running game with Ty Chandler rumbling for 132 yards on 23 carries.

Free Week 16 Lions at Vikings Betting Pick

You have to like Minnesota’s ability to keep things close, and if Chandler can find success on the ground again it’s going to force the Lions defense to make some tough decisions on how to guard Jefferson and Addison. Don’t let Detroit’s performance last week against a bad Denver defense fool you – take the points.

Free Pick: Vikings +2.5


Carl Taylor

Every loss is a chance to learn a lesson. That being said, wins are so much more enjoyable. Follow along to tap into the wisdom I've learned from 20 years as a sports bettor. Follow along on Twitter for more picks and DFS news @dailydogsports.

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