One team whose playoff chances are on life support will square off against a team that has no shot at a playoff berth, as the Atlanta Falcons will host the Detroit Lions on Sunday afternoon.
Atlanta is currently sitting at 6-8, but even with a victory on Sunday, they’ll need to catch a lot of breaks to get into the playoffs. Even after winning two of their last three, including a victory over the Arizona Cardinals, who had the best record in the NFL at the time, the Lions are still sitting with a 2-11-1 record. It’s time to check our NFL Betting analysis for the upcoming match between the Detroit Lions and Atlanta Falcons.
NFL Betting Preview for Detroit Lions vs Atlanta Falcons
Detroit Lions Analysis
The Lions have one of the worst offenses in the league. They’re averaging 17.4 points per game. Their top receiver, tight end TJ Hockenson was lost for the season after electing to have surgery.
In the past couple of weeks, Josh Reynolds, a former Rams who had been inactive for a lot of the season, has seemed to regain his chemistry with quarterback Jared Goff. Reynolds has had a nice string of games, and we’ll see if he can continue that trend on Sunday.
Last week against the Cardinals, Detroit was without its top two running backs, D’Andre Swift and Jamaal Williams. According to early reports, both should be available on Sunday, so that should give a spark to the Lions’ offense. Having those two back will be a big boost for an offense that will likely have a backup quarterback under center.
Jared Goff was placed on the COVID list earlier this week, and his status for Sunday is uncertain. If Goff isn’t able to play, Tim Boyle will start in his place. Boyle started one game this season, throwing for just 77 yards with two interceptions. Not having Goff would make things very tough for Detroit.
Atlanta Falcons Analysis
Atlanta is in desperate need of a win if they want to have any hopes of making the playoffs. The Falcons have only won one game at home this season, so home wins have been hard to come by.
Matt Ryan has been good at times and bad at others. The aging quarterback could be playing some of his final games for the Falcons, as they could choose to go in a different direction next season. He has thrown for over 3300 yards with 18 touchdowns this season.
Rookie tight end Kyle Pitts and surprising Cordarrelle Patterson have been the two biggest offensive assets this season. Pitts and Patterson should be able to take advantage of a Detroit defense that has had issues all season long.
The Falcons are favored by 5.5 points in this one. Detroit will be looking to build on their momentum from last week’s huge win over the Arizona Cardinals. While we think the Falcons will win this one, we’re not confident that they’ll cover the spread.
With Tim Boyle more than likely starting at quarterback for the Lions, that will really hurt their offensive game. Atlanta wins this one by a score of 24-20, giving themselves a late Christmas present.