Detroit has lost 16 of the last 17 games in Minnesota, but the 2011 edition of the Lions is a much different one than many of those earlier ones.
So, it seems, are the Vikings, although not in a good way. A week after being the biggest favorite in 11 years, the 2-0 Lions opened as 4-point favorites against 0-2 Minnesota.
Detroit has been a road favorite just three other times since 2005 (and lost all three) but the betting public is sticking with them here in a place they never win.
Of note, the past 6 meetings between these teams all played UNDER the total.
The visitors opened as 4-point favorites in this one at most sportsbooks tracked here at OddsShark, while the total was hovering around 43.5 at most shops.
Power Rankings / Prediction:
This game matches up the No. 24 (Vikings) and the No. 7 (Lions) teams in the league, according to our current NFL Power Rankings at OddsShark. A 49-17 result in favor of the Lions is predicted by handicapping models.
How They Match Up:
The game also pits Minnesota's No. 25-ranked offense, averaging 18.5 PPG, against a Lions defense that ranks No. 2 this week at 11.5 PPG. The Vikings aerial game is averaging 120 yards per game, less than the Lions secondary allows through the air, 187.5 YPG per game.
In comparing defenses, the Lions own the league's No. 1-rated front 7 in terms of stopping the run, allowing 56 yards per game when on the road. Minnesota, on the other hand, rates No. 2 this week in generating rushing yards at home.
Detroit won its last outing, a 48-3 result against the Chiefs on September 18. The Lions covered in that game as a 8-point favorite, while the 51 combined points took the game OVER the total. Matthew Stafford dusted the Chiefs secondary for 4 TDs last time out as the Lions defeated Kansas City 48-3 at Ford Field.
Last time out for Minnesota, they were a 24-20 loser as they battled the Buccaneers at home. The Vikings failed to cover in the match as a 1-point favorite, while 44 combined points moved the game OVER for totals bettors. Adrian Peterson ran through the Tampa Bay defense for 120 yards in Minnesota's last game, but the Vikings still lost a 24-20 decision at The Metrodome.
Detroit Lions Trends:
When playing in September are 3-7
When playing on turf are 4-6
After outgaining opponent are 5-5
When playing within the division are 2-8
Minnesota Vikings Trends:
When playing in September are 5-5
When playing on turf are 3-7
After outgaining opponent are 4-6
When playing within the division are 4-6
A few Lions at Vikings trends to consider:
Detroit is 5-0 SU in its last 5 games
The total has gone UNDER in 5 of Detroit's last 5 games when playing Minnesota
The total has gone OVER in 11 of Detroit's last 15 games
The total has gone OVER in 5 of Detroit's last 7 games on the road
Minnesota is 5-0 SU in its last 5 games when playing at home against Detroit
The total has gone UNDER in 5 of Minnesota's last 5 games when playing Detroit
Minnesota is 16-2 SU in its last 18 games when playing Detroit
Minnesota is 13-5 SU in its last 18 games at home
Detroit at Dallas, Sunday, October 2
Minnesota at Kansas City, Sunday, October 2