Philadelphia Eagles (4-6) at Detroit Lions (3-7)
The Eagles were favored by a field goal in Detroit on the early line last week, but now are 2.5 point road underdogs, a huge line movement considering the fact that close to 1 in 4 games are decided by a field goal or less. I typically like to fade significant week-to-week line movements because they tend to be overreactions to a single week of play. I think that’s the case here this week. The Eagles got embarrassed at home against the Buccaneers last week 45-17, but they still rank 12th on the season in rate of moving the chains differential.
They could be without quarterback Sam Bradford for the 2nd straight week this week, but he hasn’t played that well this season and backup Mark Sanchez isn’t really a downgrade. Their defense has been what’s kept them competitive this season. They just had a fluky bad week last week. The Eagles are also missing running back Ryan Mathews, tight end Zach Ertz, and possibly center Jason Kelce with injuries. Still, they’re a significantly better team than the Lions, which is not what this line suggests. Despite that, the public is all over Detroit and I love to fade the public whenever it makes sense, which it does this week.
The Lions have won 2 straight games, but still rank 30th in rate of moving the chains differential. They’re healthier than they’ve been all season and are playing their best football right now as a result. They’re in a tough spot with a home game against Green Bay on deck, as teams are 76-120 ATS before being home underdogs of 3+ since 2012, but the Eagles have a trip to New England on deck and teams are 34-53 ATS since 2012 before being underdogs of 10+. Neither of those things is guaranteed (Detroit being 3+ point home underdogs is more likely), but the logic holds either way. Both teams have tough upcoming games. With Kelce questionable, I can’t put any money on Philadelphia unless they’re getting a field goal, but they should be the right side.
Philadelphia Eagles 19 Detroit Lions 17 Upset Pick +120
Pick against the spread: Philadelphia +2.5