NFL: Detroit Lions vs. Los Angeles Chargers - Odds, Prediction & Picks

darren cooper
Darren Cooper
NFL Lions vs Chargers
Lions vs. Chargers Betting Tips, Odds, Predictions and Best Bets

The 6-2 Lions face the Chargers for the first time at SoFi Stadium. LA is 4-4 and 2.5 games back of the Kansas City Chiefs in the AFC West. Detroit expects to get a big lift in their running game with the return of David Montgomery from a rib injury. The Chargers defense is led by sackmaster Khalil Mack, who has nine sacks this season. The Chargers have won seven of the last nine meetings between the franchises.

Lions vs. Chargers Best Odds

Lions vs. Chargers Analysis


The Lions are 2-2-1 coming off of bye weeks in their last five seasons. This will be a homecoming of sorts for Lions QB Jared Goff. He was the Rams starting quarterback when SoFi Stadium opened in 2020. He went 6-2 as a starter there with the Rams, he’s 0-1 as a visitor, losing in 2021 to the Rams. The Lions hope to take advantage of a soft Chargers defense that ranks 30th in the NFL against the pass.

Injury Report: After a bye week, you’d expect the Lions to be as healthy as possible for any NFL team and they are. The biggest question heading into Sunday will be the status of running back David Montgomery. He’s missed the last few games with a rib injury, but Lions coach Dan Campbell said he was ‘trending up’ to play Sunday in LA.

Los Angeles ChargersChargers

The Chargers are one of the enigmas of the NFL. They look like champions one week, and dogs the next. The Lions are catching them on a high. LA has won their last two games over the Bears and Jets. QB Justin Herbert is one of the best quarterbacks in the NFL, but he’s missing star wide receiver Mike Williams who is on injured reserve. The Chargers go as Herbert goes.

Injury Report:  In the middle of the week, the Chargers turned some heads by listing only one player on their injury report: quarterback Justin Herbert who has been playing with a broken finger on his non-throwing hand. He’s playing Sunday for sure.

Lions vs. Chargers Key Points and Trends

Herbert is 63 yards away from passing Dan Marino for the second most passing yards by an NFL quarterback in their first four seasons. He’s only 304 away from passing Peyton Manning for the top spot. Barring an injury, he will get it.

Chargers offensive coordinator Kellen Moore was a Lions back-up quarterback from 2012-2015. 

The Lions are 6-2 against the spread this season while the Chargers are 3-4-1. The last six Charger games have all hit the under.

Best NFL betting sites in Michigan

Lions vs. Chargers Match Prediction

There are lots of good storylines as the Lions take on the Chargers. Lions star offensive lineman Penei Sewell and Herbert were college teammates at Oregon and know each other well. This is their first head-to-head meeting in the NFL.

Detroit should be well rested after the bye week and it will be interesting to see what wrinkles offensive coordinator Bob Johnson has installed. Will we see more of Jahmyr Gibbs out of the backfield?

The Chargers are a tough-to-figure team. The sum of their pieces don’t add up. They have one of the game’s best quarterbacks, two great defensive linemen in Joey Bosa and Khalil Mack and a legitimate No. 1 wide receiver in Keenan Allen, yet when things get tough, they tend to crumble. They led Jacksonville 27-0 in the playoffs last year only to lose 31-30 on a walk-off field goal. That loss is still hanging over this franchise.

Lions vs. Chargers Best Bet

Chargers +3 (-118) | FanDuel

The way to beat the Chargers is get up on them early, and then control the clock with your ground game. The Lions can do that, but I just don’t trust the Lions secondary to hold up against the Chargers. You know Herbert will engineer some points for LA. The Chargers want to turn this into a track meet, a high-scoring game, that’s not what the Lions want. I’ll take the 3 points from FanDuel.

Born and raised in Louisiana, Darren Cooper has a fond appreciation for bayous, Mardi Gras beads and the sports betting industry. Darren has worked for multiple print and online publications since 1998, primarily as a sports columnist in the Northeast. He’s covered a Super Bowl (it was a blowout), the World Series (same) and the NBA Draft (man, those guys are tall). For the last few years he’s dug deep into the sports gambling industry as it exploded across America, learning how the legal sausage is made and how while all the sportsbooks look the same, they all have different identities and styles. He’s learned to always bet within his means -- and take the under. When not in front of his computer creating, Darren spends time with his three boys. He runs, reads and is always looking for the next big thing to write about.