The best online sportsbooks were completely ruling out the Detroit Lions within the NFC North by giving them the worst odds of all four teams. Heck, even the Chicago Bears had better odds to win the division than the Lions. But Detroit’s unaccounted success is a prime example of the unpredictability of the NFL and it’s surprises like those that make following the sport worthwhile. As things stand now the Lions are one game ahead of the Vikings and 2 games ahead of the Packers. Can the Lions deliver one of this year’s biggest surprises by having a strong finish to the season and clinching the North? Let’s see what kind of online NFL betting odds Detroit faces in their next contest against the New Orleans Saints.
NFL Odds – Week 13 – Sunday, December 4th
Detroit Lions +5½ (-105) 53½ (-110)
New Orleans Saints -5½ (-115) 53½ (-110)
Despite the fact that the Lions lead their division, and despite the fact that the Saints are third within theirs, the line betting odds have still decided to side with New Orleans and by a considerable margin. Looking over both of these teams it’s clear that this contest might turn into a shootout, considering both teams have great quarterbacks and run-of-the-mill defenses. However, of the two, Drew Brees is the one with the Super Bowl ring and that difference is notable in both players’ stats. Stafford will be coming into this contest with a passer rating of 99.3 after throwing for 19 touchdowns, 5 interceptions, and 2,883 yards. Meanwhile, Brees will be heading into Sunday’s game with a passer rating of 109.1 after throwing for 30 touchdowns, 8 interceptions, and 3,587 yards. Considering those figures, perhaps the online NFL betting odds were right to side with the Saints.
Also contributing to the shootout theory is the fact that both of these teams will be coming in with less than stellar defenses. Without a doubt the Saints have the worst secondary. As of right now the Saints have the 27th worst pass defense, the 12th worst rush defense, and the 26th worst total defense. Similarly, Detroit has the 16th worst rush defense, the 14th worst passing defense, and the 15th worst total defense. The Lions’ numbers may be slightly better, but since Brees has been having a considerably better year than Stafford, the minute difference in their averages will not tilt the scales in the Lions’ favor.
With a win the Lions come one step closer to proving the preseason online NFL betting odds wrong and clinching the North. The Saints however are 2 games behind the Falcons in the NFC South, so they’ll need more than a win this Sunday to try and take back the division. However, the Saints are still in the Wild Card race and need a win in order to keep their postseason hopes alive.