Lions vs Vikings NFL Week 3 Picks, Prediction

Lions vs Vikings NFL Week 3 Picks, Prediction article feature image

Getty Images. Pictured: Amon-Ra St. Brown (left) and Justin Jefferson.

  • The Vikings are 6-point favorites today at home against the Lions.
  • Both teams are 1-1, but Detroit has the public backing and momentum entering this game.
  • Kody Malstrom breaks down the matchup and makes his betting pick below.

Lions vs. Vikings Odds

Sunday, Sept. 25
1 p.m. ET
Lions Odds
-112o / -109u
Vikings Odds
-112o / -109u
Odds via BetRivers. Get up-to-the-minute NFL odds here.

If Week 2 is "Overreaction Week," then I'm coining Week 3 as "Overreaction to the Overreaction Week."

Yes, the Vikings defense has looked atrocious, but if you spent 3 minutes on Twitter during their Monday Night Football matchup against the Eagles, you would have thought this was the worst team in the league.

The Lions, on the other hand, are on the complete opposite side of the overreaction spectrum. With the public drinking the Hard Knocks Kool-Aid, the support was in full effect after beating lowly Washington.

Does Detroit ride the momentum through a big divisional showdown, or will the Vikings remind everyone why they're a force to win the NFC North?

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Lions vs. Vikings Matchup Analysis

Toggle the dropdowns below to hide or show how the Lions and Vikings match up statistically:

Lions vs. Vikings DVOA Breakdown
Overall DVOA830
Pass DVOA1323
Rush DVOA232
Overall DVOA1617
Pass DVOA2419
Rush DVOA623

So far, my prediction has been coming to fruition. Lions overs might be a real thing. The Lions are the 15th team in the last 20 years to come into Week 3 scoring 30 points per game and also allowing 30 points per game.

The reason? The Lion's possess an elite offense that is capable of attacking opponents in multiple ways while the defense, mainly the secondary, remains one of the worst units in football.

Even last week against the Commanders, the Lions defense made the game a little close for comfort. Washington's offense is a below-average unit in standard downs but was moving the ball with ease as it attempted a comeback.

If the Lions want to continue to find success, the offense will have to remain elite to keep them in games. The O-line being healthy and dominant is huge, limiting the pressure on Jared Goff to help control his frantic mistakes.

The defense will have its hands full, especially the secondary, against the Vikings' pass attack. Defensive line pressure from Aidan Hutchinson & Co. will be more vital than ever since the secondary will not be able to limit the Vikings' offensive production over four quarters.

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No team was more under scrutiny for over reaction to the overreaction week than the Minnesota Vikings.

Getting steamrolled by my preseason sleeper Super Bowl pick Eagles, who may be living up to the hype behind Jalen Hurts near perfect game, showed the Vikings have some serious defensive flaws.

Ranked as one of the worst units in Defensive DVOA, the Vikings' back end has been getting cooked. Don't forget, even the Packers had open looks on deep shots that they couldn't convert in Week 1.

The Vikings hugely rely on their defensive front to put pressure on the opposing quarterback. The issue? They face another top offensive line this week. Should Danielle Hunter and Za'Darius Smith be ineffective, we may see another similar result to the Eagles game, with the Lions offense moving the ball with ease.

While Kirk Cousins looked flat in primetime, this is still an offensive unit that's more than capable of burning you at all positions. I'm expecting a bounce back performance from the likes of Justin Jefferson, Adam Thielen and Dalvin Cook, which is a trio that will be too much for the Lions defense to handle.

Betting Picks

With both teams having a similar roster blueprint — an elite offense coupled with a horrific defense — so we may see points scored in bunches.

The Vikings' sole defensive strength is in their pass rush, which is an area we may see negated against the Lions' elite offensive line.

Should Minnesota be unable to pressure Goff and force him into his typical boneheaded mistakes, then we may see the Lions offense cook once again. The Lions enter this game tied for second in the NFL in points scored.

On the other end, the Vikings should have no issue moving the ball down the field with their fast-paced, air-raid attack. They will test the Lions secondary that has yet to show any signs of life. Look for Jefferson to have a monster game making plays in the open field.

I joked Lions overs were going to be an auto play every week in Week 1 and so far, it has not shown to be going away anytime soon. I'll be betting the over at anything better than 52 up to 54.5.

FanDuel Quickslip: Over 52 | Bet to 54.5

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