Sunday Night Football Betting Preview: Lions Have Poor Track Record in Prime Time

The Pittsburgh Steelers and Detroit Lions began playing each other all the way back in 1934, but the franchises have never met in prime time. That will change in Week 8 when the clubs collide on Sunday Night Football, where the Lions will look to prove the oddsmakers wrong as home underdogs.

Lions opened as 3-point dogs with a total of 44.5.

Shark Bites
  • The Steelers are 2-5 ATS in their last seven games against the Lions.
  • The total has gone OVER in seven of the Lions’ last eight games at home in October.
  • The Steelers are 8-2 SU and 7-3 ATS in their last 10 games on the road.

Detroit has dropped eight of its last nine vs the Steelers with the last meeting between the squads coming in 2013 when Pittsburgh won 37-27. Ben Roethlisberger threw for 367 yards and four touchdowns in the win.

The Lions are riding a mini two-game losing streak that is a direct result of a defense that’s started to spring some leaks. The Lions defensive unit played well through the first four weeks of the campaign but looked shaky in a 27-24 loss to Carolina and a 52-38 defeat to New Orleans in Week 6.

Detroit had five turnovers against the Saints that led to a whopping three defensive touchdowns by New Orleans. After getting some rest during his team’s bye week, quarterback Matthew Stafford will hopefully look more like his normal self rather than the signal-caller who was battling an ankle injury while looking sloppy vs the Saints.

Top wide receiver Golden Tate's chances of playing in the game looked murky, but as of Friday afternoon reports were leaning towards him starting. In that case, Marvin Jones Jr. would be relegated back to his No. 2 role while rookie Kenny Golladay has been ruled out for a fourth straight contest with a hamstring injury.

Pittsburgh is in firm control of the AFC North at 5-2 SU and the offensive unit is once again looking like itself after a poor display vs Jacksonville a few weeks ago. Roethlisberger, who threw five picks in the aforementioned game vs the Jaguars, collected two touchdowns in Pittsburgh’s 29-14 win over Cincinnati in Week 7. Le’Veon Bell rushed 35 times for 134 yards in that one, and the Steelers are now 11-0 all-time when the star running back runs at least 25 times in a game.

Playing in prime time hasn’t exactly suited the Lions in recent history. In Detroit’s previous 16 night games, they’re a brutal 3-13 SU.

Sportsbook Odds & Computer Pick

Betting fans looking to back the visiting Pittsburgh Steelers in this one found them as 3-point favorites earlier in the week, while the total was settling in the neighborhood of 44.5 at shops such as Sportsbook.

NFL prediction models run by the computers at OddsShark picked a 26-14 result in favor of the Steelers earlier in the week. Watch matchup reports and the picks page for any changes, due to injuries or suspensions this week. View the computer score prediction and who will win the pick on the moneyline for all upcoming NFL matchups here.

Pittsburgh Steelers vs Detroit Lions Matchup

Team Betting Records & Power Rankings

Detroit will face the 5-2 Pittsburgh Steelers, who own a 4-3 ATS mark on the season. In totals betting, the Lions are 4-2 so far this season while the Steelers are 1-6. Stay Informed: follow us on Twitter for odds specials, betting line moves and Detroit vs Pittsburgh injuries news.

The power rankings show a disparity between these teams, with the Detroit Lions rated this week at No. 25 and the Pittsburgh Steelers sitting at No. 8.

Statistical Matchup

Offensively, the game matches up the Detroit Lions' No. 8-ranked offense (26.83 PPG) against a Pittsburgh Steelers defense that ranks No. 3 at 16.57 PPG. The Lions passing attack has averaged 214 yards per game, more than the Steelers give up through the air (147 YPG on average).

In comparing defenses, the Steelers own the league's No. 8-rated front 7 in terms of stopping the run, allowing 96.75 yards per game when on the road. Detroit, on the other hand, rates No. 32 this week in generating rushing yards at home.

Recent Outings Betting Recap

Le'Veon Bell went over the 100-yard mark (134) in his team's latest effort as Pittsburgh defeated Cincinnati by a score of 29-14 on Sunday.

Matthew Stafford beat the Saints secondary for 3 TDs last time out, but the Lions lost to New Orleans 52-38 at Mercedes-Benz Superdome.

Betting Trends
  • Pittsburgh is 4-2 ATS in its last 6 games
  • Pittsburgh is 14-3 SU in its last 17 games
  • The total has gone UNDER in 6 of Pittsburgh's last 7 games
  • Pittsburgh is 7-3 ATS in its last 10 games on the road
  • Detroit is 3-8 ATS in its last 11 games
  • Detroit is 3-7 SU in its last 10 games
  • The total has gone OVER in 4 of Detroit's last 6 games
  • Detroit is 1-4 ATS in its last 5 games at home

Next Betting Matchups

Pittsburgh at Indianapolis, Sunday, November 12
Detroit at Green Bay, Monday, November 6

The Steelers are 2-5 ATS in their last seven games against the Lions. The total has gone OVER in seven of the Lions’ last eight games at home in October.home The Steelers are 8-2 SU and 7-3 ATS in their last 10 games on the road.away