After suffering a tough overtime loss to the Seahawks, the Lions are back at Ford Field for a Sunday 1 p.m. kickoff against the unbeaten Atlanta Falcons. Detroit will need quarterback Jared Goff to pick up the pace with lead running back David Montgomery questionable to play. The Lions will have to stop a versatile Falcons offense that includes wide receiver Drake London, tight end Kyle Pitts plus sensational rookie running back Bijan Robinson.
NFL: Falcons vs Lions - Odds, Prediction & Picks
Falcons vs Lions Analysis
The overtime loss to the Seahawks in the home opener last week was a big setback for the Lions in more ways than one. The Lions lost star defensive back CJ Gardner-Johnson with a torn pectoral muscle and had to place him on injured reserve, while standout wide receiver Amon-Ra St. Brown suffered a toe injury that has limited him during preparation this week.
Injury Report: The Lions injury list filed Wednesday is a long one. RB David Montgomery (thigh), WR Amon-Ra St. Brown (toe), OT Taylor Decker (ankle), OL Halapoulivaati Vaitai (knee), Emmanuel Moseley (knee), Kerby Joseph (hip).
Atlanta is a surprising 2-0 after storming back to beat the Packers 25-24 on a last-minute field goal by Younghoe Koo. Quarterback Desmond Ridder has had success moving in the pocket and rookie running back Bijan Robinson has been as good as expected, running for 124 yards in the win over Green Bay. The Falcons are confident coming into Ford Field.
Injury Report: The Falcons appear to be almost fully healthy. LB Troy Andersen (concussion) and DB Jeff Okudah (foot).
Falcons vs Lions Key Points and Trends
- When Lions quarterback Jared Goff was intercepted against the Seahawks in the fourth quarter it marked his first interception in 383 throws, the third longest streak in NFL history. Aaron Rodgers (402) and Tom Brady (399) had longer streaks.
- The Lions defense ranks 26th against the run through two games. Atlanta has run the ball 71 times, fourth most of any team in the NFL.
- Atlanta went 9-8 against the spread in 2022 and is 1-1 so far this season.
Falcons vs Lions Match Prediction
Lion fans probably expected their team to be 1-1 at this point in the season, just in reverse order, expecting a win against the Seahawks and a loss to the Chiefs. The Seahawks loss was disappointing because it exposed some flaws evident in the first part of the 2022 season when the Lions couldn’t stop a mobile quarterback and couldn’t stop a downhill running game. Unfortunately, that’s exactly the type of offense they’ll see again from Atlanta. Rookie running back Bijan Robinson is elusive and quick. He made Green Bay look bad at times in Week 2, and while Falcons quarterback Desmond Ridder hasn’t developed as a passer yet, he’s mobile. Throw in the injuries to running back David Montgomery and Amon-Ra St. Brown and the Lions momentum has faded. The Falcons are getting three points from DraftKings, but may win outright.
Falcons vs Lions Best Bet
We haven’t talked much about the Falcons defense, but it’s pretty good. They’ve only allowed 505 yards through two games and have three sacks. Also the Falcons have one of the game’s best kickers in Koo. Don’t be surprised if this one comes down to a field goal at the end. The Lions don’t look like a team that can make a big play when they need to right now.
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.