Week 6 begins Sunday afternoon with the struggling Detroit Lions travelling to the City of Brotherly Love to take on the inconsistent Philadelphia Eagles.
The Lions enter this pivotal contest losers of three consecutive matches, but fans should expect an inspired outing in this make-or-break clash. If Detroit does fall to 1-4 after this match, it could be a long remainder of the season for Jim Schwartz’s side, but going against an explosive attack in Philadelphia will not be easy. Detroit was burned on special teams on frequent occasions in their last defeat to the Vikings and will need to be better in that area against a dangerous Eagles squad. The Lions enter this game as healthy as they’ve been all year, and primed for a big outing. Key safety Louis Delmas is expected to return to the struggling secondary, and should help Detroit’s atrocious pass-defense.
For the Eagles, they remain one of the NFL’s toughest teams to solve. They look like Super Bowl contenders one week, and basement fodder the next. Quarterback Mike Vick’s play has been wildly inconsistent to say the least and it’s about time for his 2012 breakout performance. Going against a porous Lions’ defense could cure what ails his game. The Eagles know they’ll be facing a desperate bunch, but Philly too must win to keep pace in the competitive NFC East. Though they enter a decent 3-2, they’ve been a couple of breaks away from being a 1-4 squad. It’s time for this team to start stringing together more consistent drives, and better overall showings. Their three wins have come by a grand total of four points, and shouldn’t feel too comfortable entering this game.
Lions vs. Eagles Spread & Betting Odds:
Detroit Lions +3.5 (-110)
@ Philadelphia Eagles -3.5 (-110)
Over 47.5 (-110)
Under 47.5 (-110)
Betting odds taken from Bovada.lv
Lions vs. Eagles Pick:
Though Detroit will turn in a much better outing than they’ve shown of late, it’s tough to back them against any team the way they’ve played of late. Detroit struggles mightily on defense, and their once potent offense has faded due to the lack of a consistent running game. Going against a very steady defense in Philadelphia, look for Detroit to become one-dimensional on the attack and being unable to shred a dangerous Eagles secondary. Stafford to Johnson remains one of the premier connections in the NFL, but this year teams have keyed in on it and severely limited its effectiveness. Expect more of the same on Sunday as Nnamdi Asomugha and Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie don’t give up much through the air.
Where Philly holds their biggest advantage in this contest will be through their diverse ground attack. Though Detroit’s defensive line would seem like a capable bunch on paper, they’ve failed to live up to the hype thus far in 2012. Highly rated Ndamukong Suh has been in the headlines all week for his legal issues and that certainly won’t bode well for his performance on Sunday. Suh has been a big disappointment on the defensive line this year for the Lions and going against the duo of LeSean McCoy and Mike Vick doesn’t seem like a good opportunity to snap out of a funk.
As fantasy owners can certainly attest to, Mike Vick has yet to have a dominant outing this season. Expect this game to be his type of encounter. Vick will be elusive, and dangerous on the ground, while having no difficulty in shredding one of the NFL’s worst secondaries. The Eagles defense will minimize the effectiveness of Detroit’s aerial assault, and look for the Philly offense to take care of the rest. Detroit is a better group than what they’ve shown thus far, but taking on an explosive Eagles side at home will ultimately lead them to a 1-4 record. They’ll be close at times, but expect Vick and the Eagles to pull away late.
PICK = Eagles -3.5 (-110)