The rivalry between the Detroit Lions and Minnesota Vikings has been even of late.
Detroit swept the series last year, but Minnesota swept the series two years ago. The teams have split the past 10 meetings, while the Vikings own a slim 6-4 edge against the spread. Detroit and Minnesota begin this season's series Sunday in Minneapolis.
NFL betting pick, via OddsShark computer: 26.0-20.0 Vikings. NFL picks on every game.
Why the Lions Can Cover the Spread
The Lions are 2-1 both SU and ATS this season and were about a foot away from being 3-0 after taking a tough 30-26 defeat against the defending NFC champion Atlanta Falcons in Week 3. Detroit fell down to the Falcons early 10-0, trailed 17-3, rallied to tie the score at 23-23 late in the third quarter but lost when a Matt Stafford touchdown pass to Golden Tate with eight seconds left on the clock was reversed upon review.
On the day, the Lions got outgained by Atlanta 428-324 but won the turnover battle 3-0 and scored on a pick-six. Unfortunately, they also just missed covering the spread as three-point home dogs.
Detroit opened this season with a 35-23 win over the Arizona Cardinals, then beat the New York Giants 24-10 on the road. Both victories came as the underdog on the betting lines.
Why the Vikings Can Cover the Spread
The Vikings are also 2-1 both SU and ATS after topping the Tampa Bay Buccaneers 34-17 in Week 3. Minnesota took an early 7-0 lead on a short Dalvin Cook touchdown run, pushed that to 21-3 at the half and then scored the first touchdown out of the locker room to take total control on its way to an easy cover as a one-point favorite.
The Vikings outgained the Buccaneers 494-342, outrushed them 125-26, held a 38-22 advantage in time of possession and won the turnover battle 3-0. Quarterback Case Keenum, playing in place of the injured Sam Bradford, connected on 25 of 33 throws for 369 yards and three touchdowns, wide receiver Stefon Diggs caught eight balls for 173 yards and two scores and Cook accounted for 169 yards from scrimmage.
Meanwhile, the Minnesota defense made two interceptions in its own end zone.
The Vikings rank second in the league in total offense, averaging 400 yards per game, and they are outrushing opponents by a 115-63 per-game margin.
Minnesota is coming off a victory. Detroit enters following a tough loss. But the Lions are the more consistent team, and they own an advantage at quarterback. As with most recent Minnesota-Detroit matchups, this one should be close. But the Lions are the smart choice at online sports betting sites.
NFL Betting Trends
The total has gone under in six of the Lions' past seven games against the Vikings.
The Vikings are 23-9 ATS in their past 32 games in the early afternoon.
The Lions are 4-11 ATS in their past 15 games against their division.
All NFL odds and betting trends according to Bleacher Report's official odds partner, OddsShark. All quotes gathered firsthand unless otherwise noted. Check out Twitter for injury and line-movement updates and the OddsShark YouTube page for picks and analysis, or download the free odds tracker app.