The Detroit Lions need to win out and hope for some help along the way. The Lions, albeit a small chance, are still alive in the postseason hunt. As it stands, they have a 14 percent chance of reaching the postseason. Barry Sanders told the team that they have good a chance as anyone. I don’t know there, the odds would suggest otherwise. The Falcons and Panthers keep winning, so they continue to put a dent in their hopes.
If the Falcons lose their next two games, against the Saints and Panthers, and the Lions win their next two, then they’re in. They have the Saints on the road and the Panthers aren’t an automatic win, so there is a sliver of hope in that regard. The other scenario that could result in a postseason berth is the Panthers losing out, and the Cowboys or Seahawks winning their next two games. It’s not impossible, but the Lions do not control their own destiny.
It’s certainly not impossible, though. I think the likelier scenario of the two is the Falcons losing their next two games. They’re not the wrecking ball we seen from last season. The Lions take on the Packers next week, a winnable game against Brett Hundley at home. First thing is first, though, and that’s the Cincinnati Bengals in Week 16. The Bengals are way out of the postseason picture with their record of 5-9. The only thing left to be decided is what’s going to happen to Marvin Lewis in the offseason. It does appear, though, that Lewis is going to be leaving.
There has appeared to be total discord between the coaching staff and players. Andy Dalton is playing like a rookie that just wants to get this season over with. His mind just doesn’t look like it’s on the football field. With just 14 points the last two weeks, the offense has looked pathetic. Dalton has passed for 1 touchdown and 3 interceptions the last two weeks. He didn’t have a touchdown and tossed 2 interceptions against the Vikings last week. The Bengals have nothing to play for, while the Lions have everything to play for. We’ll see who can put together the better game plan on Sunday afternoon. Head below for our free Lions vs. Bengals pick.
Detroit Lions vs. Cincinnati Bengals Betting Odds:
vs. Bengals +3(-110)
Betting odds provided by Bovada.lv
Lions vs. Bengals Pick:
The Bengals have hit the low-point of their season, and now they’re dealing with news of their head coach leaving at the end of the regular season. They enter going 0-3 in their last three games, averaging just 11.3 points through those outings. It seems after they blew that lead against the Bengals in that physical battle on Monday Night Football, they’ve just decided to call it a year. Burfict will be returning this week against the Lions, but that doesn’t do anything to help their sorry offense.
Cincinnati ranks dead last in the NFL in yardage per game, 32nd. They are averaging just 268.9 points overall. When you have an offense that consists of A.J. Green that isn’t acceptable. The Bengals are paying Dalton a premium price to be their quarterback, and he has not been stepping up and emerging as elite as his price tag is. They’ve struggled mightily to run the football, as they’re averaging only 77 yards per game on the ground. As Joe Mixon continues to develop, those numbers will go up in the next couple of years, though. Mixon will return this week after suffering a concussion against the Steelers.
How a team can be worst than the Lions running the football is a mystery. The Lions haven’t had a 100-yard rusher since 2013 which was courtesy of Reggie Bush. They are right ahead of the Bengals with 77.4 yards per game. Unlike the Bengals, though, the Lions have a capable air-attack with Matthew Stafford. Stafford has passed for 25 touchdowns and 9 interceptions, with 263.5 yards per game, 6th in the NFL. In the Bengals last nine games, they have wins over the Colts, Broncos, and Browns. They beat the Colts by a point, the Broncos by 3, and they had no issues with the Browns in a 30-16 victory, but it’s the Browns.
If we’re looking at the entire picture, the Bengals have two wins over the Browns, a win against the Bills, and then the Colts and Bronco wins. There isn’t one impressive win on their resume. I think the Bengals checked out after that loss to the Steelers. The Lions should be able to keep their slim playoff hopes alive with a win in Cincinnati on Sunday afternoon. I see a 6 or 7-point Lions win.
PICK: LIONS -3 (-110)