The Detroit Lions (3-13, 11-6 ATS, 7-10 O/U) collide with the Indianapolis Colts (9-8, 10-7 ATS, 8-9 O/U) in a week two preseason battle on Saturday. The Lions went 0-3 in last year’s preseason and lost to the Falcons in their opener last week. The Colts recorded a 3-0 preseason mark in 2021 and fell to the Bills in this year’s opener. Indy posted a 27-17 win against Detroit in last season's preseason bout.
Lions Topped by Falcons in Opener
The Detroit Lions enter another rebuilding season. They have now lost four consecutive preseason games. They were 1.5-point favorites in a 27-23 home defeat to the Falcons last week. The Lions gave playing time toa mny key starters last week including #1 QB Jared Goff. The veteran QB collected 3245 passing yards with a 19:8 TD to INT ratio last year.
Detroit has poor options behind Goff. Tim Boyle and David Blough are battling for the backup spot. They each played last Thursday. Blough had the most action, recording 141 passing yards while Boyle amassed 111 yards with one TD and one pick.
Detroit has some depth at RB. D’Andre Swift is the #1 RB and likely won’t play at all in this one. The same applies to veteran Jamaal Williams. The Lions gave playing time to four different running backs last week including former Chargers back Justin Jackson. He averaged a stellar 5.4 yards per carry last year.
The Lions WR corps is much better this year. Amon-Ra St. Brown was great late in the 2021 season and is considered their top WR for now. They drafted Jameson Willams in the first round out of Alabama however he is out with a knee injury. The Lions' defense was horrible last year and is a work in progress. They struggled against the run and pass. They used the second overall pick on the defensive end, Aidan Hutchinson.
Detroit scored an average of only 19.1 points last season, pegging them 25th. The defense conceded an average of 27.5 points, tabbing them 31st.
Ryan Makes Colts Debut
The Indianapolis Colts were one-point favorites in a 27-24 road loss to the Bills last week. They have a completely new look at quarterback. Gone is Carson Wentz and in is Matt Ryan. The 37-year-old isn’t as dangerous as he was in his prime but can still produce. He collected nearly 4000 passing yards with the Falcons last year. Ryan attempted 10 passes in the win last week.
The Colts have a strong backup QB in Nick Foles. The 33-year-old has a ton of experience and had a few big years with the Eagles early in his career. The Colts have a battle for the 3rd string QB job. Sam Ehlinger, who enjoyed productive seasons with the Texas Longhorns, converted on 90% of his passes for 88 yards last week. The 4th string QB is the undrafted Jack Coan who was Notre Dame’s QB last season.
The Colts' top strength is the running game highlighted by the dominant Jonathan Taylor. The 23-year-old accumulated over 1800 yards in 2021. Taylor did not see any action last week. The depth at RB is stellar including Nyheim Hines and Philip Lindsey who amassed 24 rushing yards in the preseason opener.
Tip of the iceberg. 👆 pic.twitter.com/WFiaVvgaiE— Indianapolis Colts (@Colts) August 16, 2022
The Colts' receiving corps is good but not great. Michael Pittman Jr. is an elite receiver but they don't really have a ton of depth. Parris Campbell is dealing with an injury. They also have a strong TE in Mo Alie-Cox. The Indy defense is above average. They are especially strong against the run. They limited the Bills to only 65 rushing yards last week.
The Colts scored an average of 26.5 points in 2021, ranking them ninth overall. The defense limited opponents to 21.5 points, good for ninth in the NFL.
Best Bets for this Game
Full-Game Side Bet
The Detroit Lions were competitive last week, losing on a late TD pass against the Falcons. The Lions attempted nearly 50 passes last week and were able to collect a stellar 292 passing yards. While the Lions' QBs in Tim Boyle and David Blough aren’t big names, they accrued 252 passing yards last week. The Colts squandered over 300 passing yards to Matt Barkley and Case Keenum in their first preseason action.
Furthermore, the Colts have four different QBs on the roster. While you won’t see Matt Ryan, there could be extended playing time for an inexperienced rookie Jack Coan who went undrafted. He only converted on 1 of 5 pass attempts last week. The Colts have stated most starters won't see any action in this one, giving more reasons to go with the Lions.
Full-Game Total Pick
I expect a barrage of points. The Lions' offense was dangerous against the Falcons in the opener, collecting 393 total yards. Detroit’s WR receiving depth is greatly improved and as mentioned the Colts' pass defense was exploited last week.
In addition, the Colts score points in preseason play under Frank Reich. They have scored at least 21 points in three out of their last four preseason games. Colts' #3 QB Sam Ehlinger connected on 90% of his pass attempts last week. The over has cashed in each of the Lions' previous three games.