Dr. Bob Previews LIONS (+6) Vs. REDSKINS

Robert StollCorrespondent ISeptember 24, 2009

NEW ORLEANS - SEPTEMBER 13:  Calvin Johnson #81 of the Detroit Lions runs past Malcom Jenkins #27 of the New Orleans Saints at the Louisiana Superdome on September 13, 2009 in New Orleans, Louisiana. The Saints defeated the Lions 45-27.  (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)
Washington (-6.0) 24 DETROIT 14
Over/Under Total: 38.5
10:00 AM Pacific Time Sunday, Sep-27

Detroit wasn't supposed to be as bad as they were during last season's 0-16 debacle, but the Lions lost by 18 points at New Orleans and by 14 points at home to Minnesota. There are signs of improvement, as the run defense isn't too much worse than average after compensating for opposing rushing games faced, but the pass defense is still bad and the offense is actually worse with rookie quarterback Matthew Stafford averaging a pathetic 4.8 yards per pass play with 5 interceptions in two games.

Opponents are stacking the line to stop running back Kevin Smith (just 2.6 ypr) and Stafford has not proven to be good enough to take advantage of that. Washington probably won't need extra men in the box to stop the Detroit rushing attack given they have run-stuffer Albert Haynesworth in the middle of their line and I don't see Stafford doing much damage against a solid Washington secondary.

The Redskins' offense looked bad on the scoreboard in last week's 9-7 win over the Rams, but they actually moved the ball pretty well in that game (5.5 yards per play) and also averaged 5.4 yppl against the Giants in New York in week 1. Jason Campbell is putting up solid numbers (6.5 yppp) and he is one of the best in the NFL at avoiding interceptions (just 24 in 1191 career passes, which put him among the least intercepted quarterbacks of all-time at just 2.0%).

The Redskins are likely to win the turnover battle and that usually determines which team covers the spread.

Detroit is 0-12 ATS in their last 12 games as a dog of 8 points or less and I'm not eager to back the Lions unless they are getting 10 points or more or until they start showing signs of improvement.

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