Packers vs. Lions NFL Week 9 Betting Preview: Detropia for the Win

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Jared Goff #16 of the Detroit Lions and D'Andre Swift #32 of the Detroit Lions celebrate a touchdown against the Miami Dolphins. Leon Halip/Getty Images/AFP.

The NFL odds are surprisingly tight for Sunday’s game between the Green Bay Packers and Detroit Lions. Do the Lions still have value?

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Green Bay Packers vs. Detroit Lions

Sunday, November 6, 2022 – 01:00 PM EDT at Ford Field

It took half the regular season to reach this point, but it looks like we all agree now: The Green Bay Packers (3-5 SU and ATS) are hot trash. After weeks of being overvalued in the marketplace, Green Bay appears to be perfectly priced as 3-point road faves for Sunday’s NFC North matchup with the Detroit Lions (1-6 SU, 3-4 ATS).

Good thing GTbets (visit our GTbets Review) have Detroit available at +3.5 (-109) on their NFL odds board as we go to press. That half-point makes a lot of difference, enough for us to recommend a suitably small bet on the Lions for our NFL picks. Anything more would be uncivilized.

Will the Packers Ever Win Again?

There’s a non-zero chance they will lose every single game they play until the franchise ceases to exist. However, most of the models we’re looking at have Green Bay winning Sunday’s game by 3 points, with FiveThirtyEight and others bumping it up to 3.5 points.

All the bad things about the Packers that made them so fade-worthy up until now are still true. It’s just that people are finally starting to accept the truth. This is a mediocre team as constructed, posting mediocre numbers on both sides of the ball.

Change is possible, of course. The offensive line in front of QB Aaron Rodgers hasn’t been at full capacity for much of the season, but it’s almost intact now after LT David Bakhtiari returned to duty last week against the Buffalo Bills.

And the Packers might address their obvious lack of talent at wide receiver before Tuesday’s trade deadline. Things got worse in Buffalo when rookie WR Christian Watson had to leave the game with a concussion, joining WR Allen Lazard (shoulder) on the sidelines. Both are questionable for Week 9.

Whatever happens Tuesday, we’ve seen this movie before: Rodgers and the Packers struggle, then they have a strong second half and make the playoffs. This is just a rest stop on the highway, the one with the bad coffee and the claw machine that always eats your tokens, but you keep coming back anyway.

Did the Lions Ever Win the Title?

They sure did, although you have to go way back to 1957 when Detroit claimed their 4th and final NFL Championship. That was a decade before the first Super Bowl, which the Lions have yet to play in. They’re the only team that’s been around that long who hasn’t made it to the Big Game.

Not only that, the Lions have won exactly one playoff game (in 1991) during that span. There was a handful of winning seasons with Matthew Stafford at quarterback. Detroit went 0-for-16 in 2008 and was thus able to pick Stafford first overall, but zero playoff wins, and zero division titles for that matter.

So of course, the Lions traded Stafford to the Los Angeles Rams last year, and he won the Super Bowl there. His replacement, Jared Goff, was also a first-overall pick in 2016, but 2 Pro Bowls with the Rams and a trip to Super Bowl LIII weren’t enough to save him from exile to Detropia.

But what if we told you that Goff is once again playing at a Pro Bowl level? He ranks No. 7 on this week’s passing DYAR charts at Football Outsiders, sandwiched between Seattle QB Geno Smith (another player written off way too soon) and L.A. Chargers QB Justin Herbert. The aforementioned Mr. Rodgers? No. 12 in DYAR, one spot ahead of Atlanta’s Marcus Mariota.

What About the Under?

If you’re one of the dozens (and dozens) of our regular readers, you know how much we love the underdog-Under combo here at the ranch. Well, as tight as the point spread is for Sunday’s matchup, the total might be even worse at 49 points.

At least that’s what the models are trying to tell us. From an old-school handicapping standpoint, there’s also a push-pull betting dynamic between people overvaluing Rodgers and undervaluing Goff. And since this game will be indoors at Ford Field, the weather gods won’t have any effect on the betting market.

All told, the smart play here is to take Detroit and the points, specifically, the 3.5 points, or more if you can get a better price at the best sportsbooks by the time you read this. Definitely make it a small bet, though, and may the prolate spheroid be with you.

NFL Pick: Lions +3.5 (-109) at GTbets

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Lions +3.5 (-109)
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*The line and/or odds on picks in this article might have moved since the content was commissioned. For updated line movements, visit BMR’s free betting odds product.