Well the Lions did it they blew their shot at a first round bye in Green Bay last week. We all knew they would the Lions going into the game hadn’t won at Lambeau Field in 23 years and they extended that streak by another year. The Lions are 9-1 this season against teams with a losing record, their only loss coming in Week 2 against the NFC South champions Carolina Panthers. Against teams without losing records the Lions were 2-4, Their 2 wins being an early season victory over Green Bay which was why the final game of the season was for all the marbles in the NFC North. Their other win came against the 8-8 Miami Dolphins. They lost to Arizona, New England, Buffalo and of course in Green Bay. The Dallas Cowboys went 12-4, on the other hand Tony Romo in four playoff appearances is 1-3. The problem with this Lions team is the offense doesn’t show up until the fourth quarter and the defense doesn’t show up until midway through the second quarter.
The Cowboys bring in the 2nd ranked rushing offense in the league. The Cowboys are averaging 147.1 yards a game. The Lions bring the number 1 rushing defense in the league into this game allowing opponents an average of 69.3 yards a game. The Cowboys have put most of the workload on DeMarco Murray who is averaging 115.3 yards a game and 4.7 yards a carry. Tony Romo has a TID 5.7 this year compared to his 3.9 TID from a year ago. The Lions bring in a defense that has a TID of 0.5 to this game. Last year Matthew Stafford had 29 Touchdowns and 19 Interceptions and a TID of 1.6, In a year that was supposed to see Matthew Stafford clean up his mechanics, Stafford has 22 Touchdowns, 12 Interceptions and a TID of 1.7, the improvement is negligible at least according to the stats. If one assumes that the Lions can shutdown DeMarco Murray and that Lions run game will be as inconsequential as it has been all season, than Romo with a TID of 5.7 should easily beat a Stafford who has a TID of 1.7. The two critical questions for the Lions are is Megatron healthy and can the running game get going. The Cowboys bring in the 26th ranked passing defense which theoretically should mean that Stafford should be able to pass all day on this defense. The Lions bring in the 13th ranked passing defense and if they can neutralizes the running game, it will make it easier to cover Jason Witten and Dez Bryant. The problem is that despite going 11-5 this year and with Ndamukung Suh’s future with team in doubt, they still have that same old Lions feel to them.
The key to this game is the Lions front sevens versus DeMarco Murray everything hinges on the success of the Lions shutting him down if they do that they also take the play action plays away from the Cowboys and that will make the job of covering Jason Witten and Dez Bryant a lot easier. My overall record this year has been 12-6 and 2-6 against the spread, nonetheless here is my pick against the spread.The Dallas Cowboys are 6 1/2 point favorites at home against the Lions, I think this will be a much closer game than that take the Lions and the points.
Final Score: Dallas Cowboys 20 Detroit Lions 17