It was back to reality for Detroit (1-11-1) last week, who followed up their dramatic 29-27 last-second win over Minnesota by getting stomped 38-10 in Denver. Unfortunately for Lions fans, a very similar fate may be awaiting them when 10-3 Arizona comes to Ford Field in week 15.
The Cardinals are coming to Motown angry too, losing 30-23 at home to the Rams on Monday night in a game that could have made Arizona’s NFC West crown almost an inevitability. The Cardinals still have a one-game lead over Los Angeles, but a season sweep over their division rivals would’ve been great for head-to-head tie-breaking scenarios. It’s time to take a look at both teams so you can get ready to make your bets against their NFL odds.
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Cardinals Prep for Final Month
The Cardinals need to avoid the luring trap of looking past the one-win Lions. That would be especially easy on the short week and with games against potential playoff teams Indianapolis and Dallas looming. But one would have to think Arizona has a bad taste in their mouths after the loss to the Rams.
Kyler Murray was just 32-of-49 passing vs. a Rams secondary that was missing star cornerback Jalen Ramsey due to COVID protocols. Murray did throw for 383 yards but had zero TDs and two INTs, his second time throwing multiple interceptions in the last three games.
The good news is that Murray – or perhaps more importantly, for running back James Conner – is that they’re facing a Lions team that allowed 184 yards rushing to the Broncos last week.
That being said, the Arizona defense has some concerns of their own after allowing Matthew Stafford to complete 23/30 passes for 287 yards and 3 TDs.
Detroit Done for the Year?
Last week’s game sure looked like Detroit was just happy to have gotten the win the previous Sunday. The Lions played well in tying Pittsburgh, falling by less than a field goal to Cleveland and Chicago, and finally getting the monkey off their back with the victory over Minnesota.
Last week’s game was a total regression for the Lions, but Denver is a tough place to go into and get a win. Jared Goff was 24-of-39 for just 215 yards with one TD and one INT. Goff had 296 yards and 3 TDs in the win over Minnesota the week prior, but Arizona has a top-five pass defense in the NFL, allowing just 209.8 yards/game.
It should also be noted that the 28-point loss to Denver came with the Lions having nine players in health and safety protocols. At one point this week, Detroit had only two available cornerbacks on their roster, which is not what you want to hear heading into a matchup against the Cardinals’ passing attack.
Cardinals at Lions Pick
It’s hard to see how the Lions even compete in this game on either side of the ball. Getting D’Andre Swift (questionable-shoulder) and T.J. Hockenson (questionable – hand) back would help, but Detroit is still fighting an uphill battle with their absences. Don’t expect any mercy from Arizona though.
Pick: Cardinals -12
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