Detroit Lions (0-3) at Seattle Seahawks (1-2)
What a difference a week can make. Last week, the Seahawks were 0-2 and missing Kam Chancellor, their stud safety, who was holding out. Now, though they’re just 1-2, they have Chancellor back and are coming off of a 26-0 win over the Bears, two occurrences that are certainly not unrelated to each other. The Bears are a weak team, especially with Jimmy Clausen under center, but it was such a dominant performance that it should quell a lot of concerns about this team. The Bears picked up just 7 first downs and moved the chains at a mere 41.18% rate, as opposed to 64.29% for the Seahawks.
A much better home team than road team, I think the Seahawks’ play for the rest of the season will resemble week 3 more than weeks 1-2. This is still a contender in the NFC. They won the NFC last season, despite losing two games in a row, at one point. The Seahawks should have another strong performance at home here against the Lions. Not only are they 21-9 ATS at home in the Russell Wilson era (since 2012), but this game is on Monday Night and western time zone teams cover about 2/3rds of the time in night games against eastern time zone teams because of sleep cycles.
The Seahawks could be missing Marshawn Lynch (and Brandon Mebane) in this one, as reports have Lynch 40% likely to play. If he does end up sitting, the Seahawks will have to start undrafted rookie Thomas Rawls. Rawls looked decent last week in relief of Beast Mode, but it’s still hard to trust an undrafted rookie behind a poor run blocking line. The good news for the Seahawks is the Lions are even more banged up. DeAndre Levy, the Lions’ best defensive player, will miss his 4th straight game with a hip problem, while right guard Larry Warford, tight end Brandon Pettigrew, and running back Joique Bell.
The Lions are 0-3 and have been one of the worst teams in the league thus far this season, ranking 23rd in rate of moving the chains. They’re obviously not as good as they were last season, not just because of injuries, but also because they lost Ndamukong Suh in free agency. They’ve played a tough schedule and they should be better going forward, but their schedule remains hard this week and they probably need to get healthy to start being anything more than an average at best team. The Seahawks have one trend working against them, as teams are 4-17 ATS during week 4 as favorites after winning their first game of the season in week 3, the previous week. Given that and the fact that this line is 10, I can’t be confident in Seattle, but I’m going with them.
Seattle Seahawks 24 Detroit Lions 13 Survivor Pick
Pick against the spread: Seattle -10