New England Patriots vs. Detroit Lions Preview
Where: Ford Field – Detroit, MI
When: Friday, August 25, 2017, 7:00 PM ET
TV Broadcast: WBZ, FOX2 (WJBK)
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Betting on the New England Patriots (-2.5)
The Patriots are still winless this preseason but that may be about to change this coming Friday. Based on past history, head coach Bill Belichick plays his starters into the third quarter of New England’s third preseason game so they can build their stamina. That way, his players will experience what it’s like to come out of the locker room after the halftime break and go back on the field.
That means more playing time for Tom Brady who was solid in his preseason debut against Houston on Saturday night. The five-time Super Bowl champion started and played the first two series of that contest, totaling 16 snaps. He finished on a high note by leading New England to a 10-play, 75-yard touchdown drive.
Another guy who’s making a name this preseason for New England is Dion Lewis. The 26-year-old looked sharp on the ground for a second straight week after having compiled 32 yards on seven rushes in the opener against the Jaguars. He rushed for 34 yards on seven carries and brought in one of two targets for nine yards in Saturday’s loss to Houston. Lewis also had a solid 29-yard kickoff return in which he showed he is currently the Pats’ top option in that role.
Betting on the Detroit Lions (+2.5)
The Detroit Lions preserved their unbeaten record this preseason with a comprehensive 16-6 victory over the New York Jets on Saturday. The Lions’ defense stood tall in that encounter, holding the Jets to just three yards of offense in the first quarter and just two first downs in the first half. Not bad for a team whose depth along the defensive front is being tested because of injuries to Kerry Hyder and Ziggy Ansah.
Things are bound to get tougher, though, for the Lions as they will next face the New England Patriots. The reigning Super Bowl champions will provide a much sterner test compared to the Jets who struggled with Christian Hackenberg under center. Tom Brady showed that he is no Hackenberg in his preseason debut against the Texans, completing 6-of-9 passes for 67 yards with one touchdown and no interceptions.
The good news for the Lions is that their starting quarterback has hit the ground running as well this preseason. Matthew Stafford went 8-of-10 for 84 yards and a touchdown in the win against the Jets. He has formed quite a partnership with Marvin Jones who caught a game-high four passes and a touchdown Saturday. Jones’ first score since last October 16 was a thing of beauty with the 27-year-old managing a beautiful toe-tap in the back of the end zone on a perfectly thrown fade route.
New England (-2.5) wins, 23-20.
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