NFL Expert Picks Preseason Week 2

Detroit Lions Vs Seattle Seahawks Odds: Point Spread & Total

The 9-7 Detroit Lions are hoping to snap a three-game skid, eight in the postseason, when they visit the 10-5-1 Seattle Seahawks on Saturday night as big road underdogs in the first NFC Wild Card Game. The NFL Detroit Vs Seattle Wild Card odds favor the Seahawks by 8-points. Kick-off is this Saturday, January 7th at 8:15 PM ET on NBC from the CenturyLink Field in Seattle, Washington.

Detroit Lions Vs Seattle Seahawks Points Spread & Total

The Seahawks opened as 7.5-point favorites; the total was 43 early in the week. The Lions are lucky to be in the playoffs after ending the regular season on a three-game skid, capped by a 31-24 home loss to the Green Bay Packers for the NFC North title as 3.5-point home underdogs last Sunday night.

What: Detroit Lions (9-7) at Seattle Seahawks (10-5-1)
When: Saturday, January 7, 2016
Start Time: 8:15 PM ET  
Where: Seattle, WA
Stadium: CenturyLink Field
Spread: Seahawks -8
Moneyline: Detroit +300 vs Seattle -380
Game Total: 42.5
Watch: NBC
Stream: NBC Sports Live
Listen: Detroit vs Seattle

Why Bet The Detroit Lions To Beat The Seahawks

The Detroit Lions ended the regular with a 9-7 SU and 8-8 ATS record after losing the regular-season finale against the Packers. They average 21.5 points per game (20th) and allow 22.4 points per game (13th).

The Lions average 256.9 passing yards per game (11th). QB Matthew Stafford (4327 yards, 24 TDs & 10 INTs) hasn’t been the same since he injured his middle finger. Before his finger injury, Stafford had completed 67.2 percent of his passes and thrown 21 touchdown passes and five interceptions, and the Lions were 8-4. Since his finger injury, Stafford has completed 60.2 percent of his passes and thrown three touchdown passes and five interceptions, and the Lions are 1-3.

"He’s in the mode where he’s gotten a good feel for what he’s doing with the apparatus," Lions coach Jim Caldwell said of Stafford and the glove. "Whether or not he’s continually experimenting with some things, I’m not certain of.

WR Golden Tate (91 rec, 1077 yards, 4 TDs) and Marvin Jones (55 rec, 930 yards, 4 TDs) have emerged as a great pass-catching duo for the Lions after Megatron’s offseason retirement.L. The Lions average 81.9 rushing yards per game (30th). RB Zach Zenner (88 rec, 334 yards, 4 TDs) has averaged 3.8 yards per carry since he took the starting tailback job. Zenner has scored three of his four touchdowns in the last two games.

Detroit has the 18th-ranked total defense in the NFL. They allow 248.0 passing yards per game (19th) and 106.3 rushing yards (18th). The Lions have recorded 26 sacks this season (31st). LB Tahir Whitehead has 132 tackles, and DT Kerry Hyder has 8.0 sacks.

Why Bet The Seattle Seahawks To Beat The Lions

Seattle closed the season with a 2-2 record in their last four and 10-5-1 SU and 7-8-1 ATS this season. They have averaged 22.0 points per game (18th) and give up 18.3 points per game (3rd).

The Seahawks enjoy what is currently the best home-field advantage in the NFL. CenturyLink Field requires a long flight and welcomes visitors with ear-splitting decibels that are known to cause false starts among near-deaf offensive linemen. 

The Seahawks average 257.8 passing yards per game (10th). QB Russell Wilson (4219 yards, 21 TDs & 11 INTs) closed the season with his second lowest TD tally of his career after throwing a career’s best 34 touchdown passes a season ago. Wilson was dogged with ankle and pectoral injuries most of this season dampening his usual elusiveness that allowed him to extend plays. He had to stay in the pocket most of the season and became a better passer, throwing for a career-high 4,219 yards this season.

WR Doug Baldwin (94 rec, 1128 yards, 7 TDs) and TE Jimmy Graham (65 rec, 923 yards, 6 TDs) had good seasons that could have been spectacular if not for Wilson’s injuries. Seattle averages 99.4 rushing yards per game (25th). RB Thomas Rawls (109 car, 349 yards, 3 TDs) averages only 38.8 rushing yards per game.

Seattle has the 5th best total defense in the NFL. They allow 226.0 passing yards per game (8th) and 92.9 rushing yards (7th). The Seahawks have recorded 42 sacks this season. LB Bobby Wagner led the NFL with 167 tackles, and DE Cliff Avril had 11.5 sacks.

If You Still Can’t Decide Who To Bet On:

  • Detroit is 1-4 ATS in its last 5 games
  • Detroit is 8-4 SU in its last 12 games
  • Detroit is 2-5 ATS in its last 7 games on the road
  • Detroit is 2-5 SU in its last 7 games on the road
  • Seattle is 2-4 ATS in its last 6 games
  • Seattle is 17-7-1 SU in its last 25 games
  • Seattle is 2-4 ATS in its last 6 games when playing Detroit
  • Seattle is 4-1 SU in its last 5 games when playing Detroit
  • The Lions are 3-1 ATS in their last four games against the Seahawks.
  • The total has gone over in five of the Seahawks’ last six games in the playoffs.
  • The Lions are 2-5 straight up and ATS in their last seven games on the road.

Expert ATS Pick & Final Score Prediction:

Since the Lions have can’t run the ball, it will be on Stafford’s wonky finger to win this game on the road. That will be a tough task, especially at night and at Century Link Field. Seattle has gone 20-4-2 ATS in its last 26 prime-time games.

Detroit hasn’t won a playoff game since 1991. The Lions’ last postseason road win occurred in — wait for it — 1957. 

Throw in the fact that the Seahawks have won their last nine home playoff games and have never tasted postseason defeat in Seattle under Pete Carroll and Russell Wilson. Bet the Seahawks to win and cover the spread.

Oakland Raiders at Houston Texans Wild Card Spread & Pick

Oakland Raiders at Houston Texans Wild Card Spread & Pick

Two teams with serious QB issues faceoff in the first Wild Card game of the NFL postseason this year. It will be the 9-7 Houston Texans hosting the 12-4 Oakland Raiders as small home favorites in the first AFC Wild Card Game. Kick-off is this Saturday, January 7th at 4:35 PM ET on ESPN from the NRG Stadium in Houston, Texas.

Texans coach Bill O’Brien has decided to go back to former starter and $72 million dollar mistake Brock Osweiler under center, while the Raiders are going rookie Connor Cook with their franchise QB out with a broken leg.

Oakland Raiders at Houston Texans AFC Wild Card Betting Spread & ATS Pick

The Texans opened as 1.5-point favorites; the total was 36.5 early in the week. But with all of the QB shuffling the spread has shifted heavily and finally settled. The NFL Wild Card Oakland Vs Houston betting spread favors the Texans by 3.5-points.

What: Oakland Raiders (12-4) at Houston Texans (9-7)
When: Saturday, January 7, 2016
Start Time: 4:35 PM ET  
Where: Houston, TX
Stadium: NRG Stadium
Spread: Texans -3.5
Moneyline: Oakland +155 vs Houston -185
Game Total: 42.5
Watch: ESPN
Stream: Watch ESPN
Listen: Oakland vs Houston

Why Bet The Oakland Raiders To Beat The Texans

The Oakland Raiders finished the regular season with a 12-4 SU record and 10-6 ATS record. While they were the second seed out of the AFC for a large portion of November and December, they ended the season as a wild card team after losing a 24-6 loss to the Denver Broncos last Sunday. They average 26.0 points per game (7th) and allow 24.1 points per game (20th).

The Raiders average 253.1 passing yards per game (13th), but those stats are propped up due to QB Derek Carr’s (3937 yards, 28 TDs & 6 INTs) play. With Carr out due to a broken leg, Raider Nation’s Super Bowl dreams are in the hands of career backup and a rookie. Backup QB Matt McGloin (50 yards, 0 TDs & 0 INTs) suffered shoulder injury against the Broncos pushing rookie QB Connor Cook (150 yards, 1 TDs & 1 INTs) into the starting job.

The NFL’s hottest WR duo of Amari Cooper (83 rec, 1153 yards, 5 TDs) and Michael Crabtree (89 rec, 1003 yards, 8 TDs) will need an extra edge against the Texans fearful D to give Cook an extra second or two to find the open receiver. Oakland averages 120.1 rushing yards per game (6th). RB Latavius Murray (195 car, 788 yards, 12 TDs) will get the ball early and often playing behind a rookie QB. He had only two games of over 100+ yards this season.

“I mean, Latavius ends up with five carries. How’s that happen?” Del Rio said after the loss to Denver. “It wasn’t a great job of executing by the Oakland Raiders. So, you know, that’s what it is. We own up to it and we’re going to put it behind us as quick as possible and move forward.”

Oakland has the 26th-ranked total defense in the NFL. The Raiders allow 258.0 passing yards (28th) and 117.6 rushing yards per game (23rd). They have recorded 25 sacks this season (32nd). LB Malcolm Smith leads the team with 103 tackles, and OLB Khalil Mack had 11.0 sacks.

Why Bet The Houston Texans To Beat The Raiders

The Houston Texans are 9-7 SU and 6-9-1 ATS this season after losing 24-17 to the Tennessee Titans in week 17. They average 17.3 points per game (29th) and give up 20.5 points per game (11th).

The Texans average 198.5 passing yards per game (29th). Their struggling offense will likely have QB Brock Osweiler (2957 yards, 15 TDs & 16 INTs) as the starter against Oakland. QB Tom Savage started the previous two games but was knocked out of their week 17 tilt due to a concussion.

“It allows me to get to the line of scrimmage, run through cadence, see what the secondary is doing, see what the linebackers are doing, get us into the proper protection and really at the end of the day just go play backyard football,” Osweiler said about the Texans no-huddle offense. “Say, OK, it’s going to be this coverage [and] who’s going to be open."

WRs DeAndre Hopkins (78 rec, 954 yards, 4 TDs) and rookie Will Fuller (47 rec, 635 yards, 2 TDs) are the main targets in this offense. Both are speedy and have good hands. Houston averages 116.2 rushing yards per game (8th). RB Lamar Miller (268 car, 1073 yards, 5 TDs) didn’t play last week due to an ankle injury. Miller is expected to start against Oakland.

Houston has the best total defense in the NFL. The Texans allow 202.0 passing yards per game (2nd) and 99.7 rushing yards (12th). They have recorded 31 sacks this season (24th). LB Benardrick McKinney has 129 tackles, and LB Whitney Mercilus has 7.5 sacks.

If You Still Can’t Decide Who To Bet On:

  • Oakland is 7-3 ATS in its last 10 games
  • Oakland is 8-2 SU in its last 10 games
  • Oakland is 9-2 ATS in its last 11 games on the road
  • Oakland is 6-2 SU in its last 8 games on the road
  • Houston is 1-6 ATS in its last 7 games
  • Houston is 1-3-1 ATS in its last 5 games at home
  • Houston is 7-1 SU in its last 8 games at home
  • The total has gone over in the Raiders’ last three games against the Texans.
  • The total has gone under in nine of the Texans’ last 12 games at home.
  • The Raiders are 7-2-1 ATS in their last 10 games in the playoffs.

Oakland Raiders at Houston Texans Wild Card ATS Pick

Houston did not use its home field well a year ago in a 30-0 Wild Card Game loss to the Kansas City Chiefs, but the team went 7-1 straight up at NRG Stadium during the regular season with a 4-3-1 mark against the spread.

In their last meeting in November in Mexico City, Oakland won 27-20. But the Raiders had Carr under center. Throw in the fact that the Texans actually had six more first downs than the Raiders and allowed just 30 rushing yards. There were also a couple of blown calls that went the Raiders way.

When you take everything that happened in that game and add the fact the Raiders are playing a rookie third string quarterback, you have to like the Texans in this game. Look for Houston’s defense to dominate this contest and for the Texans offense to do just enough to get the win and cover.