DETROIT LIONS (1-3)
at PHILADELPHIA EAGLES (3-2)
Kickoff: Sunday, 1:00 p.m. EDT
Line: Philadelphia -3˝, Total: 47˝
Well-rested Detroit tries to put an end to its three-game losing skid on Sunday when it visits a Philadelphia team that has lost two of its past three contests.
The Lions have been completely unwilling to open up their offense this year, a big reason they’ve dropped three in a row and had to come back to beat the Rams at home for their lone SU win way back in Week 1. Their defense has been average and their special teams have been atrocious during a three-game slide, though they had a bye week to address their issues. The Eagles continue to give the ball away. QB Michael Vick lost two more fumbles in their Week 5 loss at Pittsburgh, making it 14 giveaways for the Eagles on the season (second-most in the NFL). Despite that, Philly is 3-0 SU when it tallies at least 400 yards of offense.
Can the Lions end their long losing skid facing Philadelphia? For the answer, connect to The Platinum Sheet for all the StatFox Experts picks for every NFL game throughout the 2012 season and playoffs.
Matthew Stafford's Lions rank second in the NFL in passing offense (322 YPG), but he has more interceptions (four) than touchdown passes (three) this season. WR Calvin Johnson, who scored 16 touchdowns a year ago, sits with just one TD catch, but he does have 29 receptions and 423 yards in four games. TE Brandon Pettigrew, who had seven catches for 108 yards two years ago against Philadelphia, is listed as questionable with a knee injury, but he should be able to play on Sunday. Detroit's ground game is a bigger concern though, eclipsing 85 rushing yards just once this season. In the Lions last game versus Minnesota, the team rushed for just 55 yards on 20 carries. RB Mikel Leshoure should finally be 100 percent healthy, and has a chance for a strong game against an Eagles defense that allowed 136 rushing yards against the Steelers last week. On the defensive side of the ball, Detroit has actually been better than most teams, ranking 10th in passing defense (213 YPG) and 13th in rushing defense (103 YPG). The Lions held the Vikings to 227 total yards in their last game.
The Eagles' offense has sputtered in the past three weeks, scoring just 13.0 PPG, but they piled up plenty of numbers in their 35-32 win at Detroit in 2010. Vick threw for 284 yards and 2 TD that day, with DeSean Jackson going for 135 receiving yards and a score. But the hero of that game was LeSean McCoy, who rushed for 120 yards on just 16 carries (7.5 YPC), finding the end zone three times. That made his team 6-0 SU (5-1 ATS) versus Detroit over the past six meetings. The Lions may have a better defense now than they did two years ago, but Philly's biggest issue has been turnovers and Detroit has forced just three turnovers for the entire season. If the Eagles can hang onto the football, the yards will come. Although the Eagles rushed for a mere 78 yards last week, they started the season with four straight games of 125+ yards on the ground. On defense, Philadelphia has been solid in both facets, ranking 9th against the pass (209 YPG) and 12th versus the run (98 YPG). However, they have forced just one turnover over the past three weeks combined.