The Week 15 edition of Monday Night Football, from Ford Field, features the Baltimore Ravens and Detroit Lions in a matchup that could decide the playoff fates for both. The Lions have dropped three of their last four, but they still sit in first place in the NFC North—but only via a tiebreaker over Chicago, a team with a matching record. The Ravens have won four of five and three straight, but the Ravens sit two games behind Cincinnati in the AFC North. Here are the Ravens vs Lions Point Spread for ESPN Monday Night Football. NFL oddsmakers have the Lions as -6.5 point home favorites over the Ravens with the total set at 50 points. Be sure to get your MNF picks in ahead of kick-off.
The Ravens (7-6, 1-5 V) won a wild one a week ago, topping Minnesota 29-26 in a game that saw six lead changes in the fourth quarter. They haven’t been able to do much on offense all year and has been especially ineffective in the running game, long a staple of its success. Receiver Torrey Smith, who needs 37 receiving yards to reach 1,000 for the first time in his career, is a legitimate deep threat, though, and the Lions have given up a lot of big plays. The Ravens’ defense isn’t at the elite level as in years past but is still strong against the run, though the secondary could have trouble with Detroit star Calvin Johnson.
Baltimore goes up against a Detroit team that is 4-2 at home and boasts an offense that scores an average of 26.6 points per game—five teams score more.
While Baltimore has ranked in the top 10 against the rush this season, the one blemish for the solid defense has come against the pass. The Ravens give up an average of 231.7 yards per game and are coming off a 29-26 win over 3-9-1 Minnesota—where Baltimore needed 22 points in the fourth quarter to come back after allowing journeyman quarterback Matt Cassel to throw for 265 yards and two touchdowns. In Detroit, Baltimore must play much better to escape with its second road win of the year
The Lions (7-6, 4-2 H) lost 34-20 in blizzard-like conditions in Philadelphia last week. Bush sat out that game after aggravating a calf injury during warmups – a huge blow on a day when passing was nearly impossible – but is expected to be back on the field against Baltimore.
The Ravens offense sputtered in Philadelphia, as two of the Lions’ three touchdowns came on special teams and Detroit committed three turnovers, bringing its total to 15 over the past four games. Detroit leans heavily on its passing game, and quarterback Matthew Stafford needs just 27 passing yards for his third consecutive 4,000-yard season. The defense has been solid against the run, last week notwithstanding, but is susceptible to the pass.
To make matters worse for Baltimore, the Lions will likely have running back Reggie Bush back (1,302 total yards, five touchdowns).
Recent Trends to Consider and NFL Points Spreads:
Home team is 4-0 ATS in their last 4 meetings.
Over is 13-2-2 in Lions last 17 games in Week 15.
Over is 6-1 in Lions last 7 home games.
Ravens are 5-0-1 ATS in their last 6 road games vs. a team with a winning home record.
Lions are 5-1 ATS in their last 6 games after accumulating less than 90 yards rushing in their previous game.
Ravens are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games following a S.U. win.
Ravens are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games after allowing more than 250 yards passing in their previous game.
Ravens are 1-8 ATS in their last 9 games in December.
Lions are 3-13 ATS in their last 16 games after allowing more than 30 points in their previous game.
Lions are 1-5 ATS in their last 6 games in December.
Baltimore Ravens vs Detroit Lions
When: Monday Dec 16@8:30 PM ET
Pick: Lions -6.5
The Bottom Line: Road woes, an anemic offense and unnecessary motivation for an explosive offense via prodding one of the NFL’s best players is simply a bad recipe for the Ravens on Monday night. We recommend you signup with Bovada to receive a 10% signup bonus heading into Week 15’s MNF matchup.