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Sunday, December 29, 2013

NFL Week 17 Cash-In: Detroit at Minnesota

Wild on Sports
NFL Week 17 Cash-In
Detroit Lions at Minnesota Vikings
Line: Minnesota -3, O/U: 51

The Match-Up:
The Detroit Lions head to Minnesota to take on the division rival Vikings. This could be a game without stars as Adrian Peterson has been ruled out and the Lions are considering shutting down Calvin Johnson. Neither team has a chance of making the playoffs at this point so the two teams will be looking at auditions for 2014 and perhaps a little pride.

The Lions seemed to be in the drivers seat for a division title three weeks ago as they controlled their own destiny and were playing some inspired football. Fast forward three weeks and here are the Lions one the outside looking in after dropping three straight games. Matt Stafford has been turnover prone, the running game has failed to gain traction and the defense seems to be just porous enough to not get it done.

Minnesota comes into the game as a confusing team. Clearly they are terrible on the road, going 1-7-1. At home they are 3-3 with wins over Philly and Chicago in their last two home games. Will that home momentum continue this week? With the horrible inconsistency at QB you just never know what you are going to get both in terms of playing ability and personnel. Add to that the loss of all world runningback Adrian Peterson and this could be ugly. But then again...

Lions are 1-14 SU past 15 trips to Minnesota
Lions are 1-8 SU, 1-7-1 ATS past nine games as road underdogs
Vikings are 2-7-1 ATS past 10 games as home favorites
Lions are 5-1 ATS past six divisional games
Lions OVER is 10-1 past 11 Week 17 games
Lions 5-1 ATS past 6 regular season finales
Vikings 3-10 ATS past 13 regular season finales

The Verdict:
Matthew Stafford and company have a lot to prove going into the off-season. This group has been together for a while now and it is about time they start showing promise or significant off-season changes could be in order. The Vikings are favorites by virtue of being at home. In a game that is a toss up, at least in the minds of many, we'll take the points.

Pick: DETROIT +3


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