A week six battle between two 1-win teams who when you look at it are a little similar.
The Lions come off their bye week and gives them an initial advantage, they’ve had two weeks to prepare for the Jags whilst the Jags have had only a week to prepare for them and I’m sure in this two week preparation time they’d have noticed that the Jags Defense give up over 75% pass completion and average over 280 passing yards against per game all of which will be music to the ears of Matthew Stafford who himself averages over 250 passing yards per game and has thrown 8 TD passes against only 3 INT’s in 2020. Lead RB Adrian Peterson will be looking to take advantage of a poor Jags run D who are just done with allowing David Johnson pick up 5 yards a carry for nearly 100 yards against them and I’m personally hoping the bye week has allowed for rookie DeAndre Swift to pick up more of the Offense and get himself more involved in the run game against a pretty soft Jags front. The Defense is respectable against the pass but downright awful against the run allowing a league high 170.3 rush yards per game average so far this season so look for James Robinson to get himself back on track… If he can keep hold of the football that is.
The Jags were pretty handedly beaten by the previously winless Houston Texans last week in a game where their Defense gave up nearly 360 yards and 3 TD’s to Deshaun Watson and over 160 of those yards went to Brandin Cooks who also helped himself to a TD so the Jags will have to make sure they can keep Lions WR Kenny Golladay quiet, Golladay has a TD in both games he’s played this season. In retaliation to this porous pass Defense is the Gardner Minshew lead Offense and Gardner has looked pretty good this year posting 10 TD’s against 4 INT’s whilst averaging over 285 passing yards a game. It’s telling that Minshew has three games this season with multiple passing TD’s and over 300 yards and all three ended in defeat whilst in the Jags’ only win, on the opening day vs Indy, Minshew was held to under 175 passing yards. If you’re throwing the ball a lot it’s usually because you’re chasing the game.
I think this game could go either way and that’s what makes me a little apprehensive picking a best bet here but I think the number (O/U 38.5) pass attempts for Matthew Stafford is too big not to take, Stafford has thrown for no more than 33 attempts the last three games and has exactly that number in each of his two previous games vs the Jags whilst the Jags have only faced 39 or more pass attempts in one game this season (vs the Colts, in a game they won, if you’re losing you throw more hence why Indy let their noodle arm QB throw so often) I expected the number to be between 32.5 – 34.5 so those extra 4 attempts are value in my opinion. If the Lions can get up early and lead the game then the less pass attempts we should see and coming off the bye week with extra time to prepare I’m going to take the Lions.
PREDICTION: LIONS 28 – 14 JAGUARS
BEST BET: Matthew Stafford under 38.5 pass attempts – 5/6 with SkyBet. 1 point bet.