The Detroit Lions will try once again to record their first victory of the 2015 NFL season when they host the Arizona Cardinals at Ford Field on Sunday, October 11 in an intriguing NFC showdown. Arizona will be trying to rebound from their first defeat of the campaign after winning their first three while the Lions have dropped all four of their starts so far. The Cardinals came out on the wrong end of a 24-22 decision at home to the St. Louis Rams last Sunday while the Lions were taken down 13-10 by the Seattle Seahawks on Monday night. The Cardinals lead the NFC West and Detroit sits in the cellar of the NFC North Division.
- 5Dimes currently lists Detroit +2.5 and the over/under at 44.5 points
Arizona led the league in scoring after week three, but struggled last weekend and ended up paying for it. They were 12 for 13 entering the game against when it came to converting their red zone chances into touchdowns, but had to settle for four field goals last week in their five visits to the zone. Quarterback Carson Palmer was under pressure the entire game, but managed 252 passing yards and a touchdown by going 29 for 46. He was sacked four times though and picked off once. Arizona’s run defense had a hard time during the second half when Todd Gurley racked up 141 rushing yards.
The Cardinals will be facing a mediocre secondary at Ford Field as the Lions concede an average of 9.2 yards for each reception, which is the second-highest in the NFL. Palmer will probably be aiming for wideouts John Brown and Larry Fitzgerald in this game. Fitzgerald averages 14.4 yards each reception to lead the Cardinals and gained 99 yards last week by going seven for nine. Arizona has beaten Detroit seven times in their past 10 matchups and are 3-2 against the spread in their past five road trips. However, they’re 2-3 straight up in those contests.
The Lions enter this game as the only team in the NFL without a win to its name. They played well against Seattle on week four, but still couldn’t manage to get over the hump. To make matters worse, no club has ever reached the postseason after going 0-4 to start the season. The Lions will be hoping quarterback Matthew Stafford can show more consistency. He’s been intercepted five times in his four outings and has five touchdown passes to his name. He gained 203 yards last Monday by completing 24 out of 35 passes and for the first time this year he wasn’t picked off.
The Lions’ defense also needs to improve as they’re allowing an average of 383 yards against per game. They’ll be facing an Arizona squad that has scored an average of 37 points per game so far this season, which is the fourth-best offense in the league. The Lions are 4-1 straight up at home in their past five contests at Ford Field and 3-2 against the spread in them. It’s unlikely the Lions will break their losing skid this weekend.
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By Ian Palmer