Arizona Cardinals vs. Detroit Lions Prediction, Preview, Picks & Odds - 12/19/2021

by Chuck Sommers

Game time: 1 p.m. ET
Venue: Ford Field, Detroit, MI
Where to watch: FOX

Opening Odds at USA Sportsbooks


DraftKings: Cardinals -13.5
BetMGM: Cardinals -13.5
Caesars: Cardinals -13.5

Season record
Cardinals: 10-3 (1st place, NFC West)
Lions: 1-11-1 (Last place, NFC North)

A strong 6-2 week for Sean Murphy in this past Sunday’s slate of games. With two Saturday games and more on the horizon, what can this crucial week hold as we enter the final month of the regular season? Catch Murph’s plays, available right now at the Shop Picks page, where you can find all of the Best Bets from our champion sports handicappers.

Cardinals - Lions preview and analysis


Last week
Cardinals: lost 30-23 vs. Rams (Monday)
Lions: lost 38-10 at Broncos

The Arizona Cardinals ran into a speed bump on Monday, but all signs point to them bouncing back against the Detroit Lions on the road Sunday.

Monday night was not the overall performance the Cardinals were hoping for in a must-win game against the Los Angeles Rams, losing 30-23. Quarterback Kyler Murray threw for 383 yards, but also tossed two interceptions while Matthew Stafford outplayed him by a wide margin.

The explosive Cardinals offense has been held to under 23 points in four of the last six games and has been held under 400 yards three times.

"Not very clean but I thought the effort was as good as we've had as far as start to finish," Cardinals coach Kliff Kingsbury said. "Some adverse situations and guys continued to battle and stay in the game, but just not clean enough in any phase."

The Cardinals are only a game ahead of the Rams for first place in the NFC West, and the No. 1 spot in the NFC is now wide-open. The Green Bay Packers, via tiebreaker, passed them in the standings, and the Dallas Cowboys will face them in a couple weeks. This playoff picture is nowhere near safe.

Unfortunately, the same can’t be said for the Lions but if Dan Campbell’s team wants to play spoiler, that’s very much a possibility. They just can’t be putting up 38-10 duds against the Denver Broncos like they did last week.

Jared Goff threw for 215 yards and a touchdown, but also an interception. One bright spot: Craig Reynolds had 83 yards on 11 carries. Detroit is just searching for answers for a complementary offense, but that’s not working at this stage of the year.

The Lions covered their last four against the spread prior to Sunday’s loss and are actually 8-5 ATS this season overall. It makes you wonder what if there was an ATS playoff tree, and who would win the Spread Bowl? No? Just me?

Prediction


We have to remember the Cardinals were without Murray and DeAndre Hopkins for a bit and they need to round back into form at some point. This will be a good tune-up for Arizona in what will be a comfortable win in this matchup in Detroit. Trust the Cardinals’ defense. Cardinals by 21

Betting trends


The Cardinals, who are 7-0 on the road this season, are 16-6 ATS in their last 22 away from Arizona.

The Cardinals are 30-33 ATS in their last 63 NFC North games.

The Lions are 2-17 straight up in their last 19 as a home dog.

Players to watch


Cardinals: Running back James Conner had 125 yards from scrimmage last week of a career-high nine catches. He also had two rushing touchdowns against the Rams.

Lions: Tight end T.J. Hockenson will try for his third straight game with a receiving touchdown.

Statistical leaders


Cardinals:
Passing: Kyler Murray – 2,782 yards, 19 TD, 9 INT
Rushing: James Conner – 661 yards, 14 TD
Receiving: Christian Kirk – 718 yards, 4 TD
Defense: Markus Golden – 10 sacks

Lions:
Passing: Jared Goff – 2,791 yards, 14 TD, 8 INT
Rushing: D’Andre Swift – 555 yards, 4 TD
Receiving: T.J. Hockenson – 583 yards, 4 TD
Defense: Amani Oruwariye – 5 INT

Don't miss our champion handicappers' free picks and expert football picks today. And if you enjoyed this Arizona Cardinals - Detroit Lions prediction, be sure to drop by every day for our daily NFL projections and previews.

Chuck Sommers

About the Author:

Chuck Sommers has camped outside of sportsbooks since he can remember, learning the tricks and nuances of the trade. He still has nightmares of betting $5,000 on the Raiders in the Tuck Rule game but has since turned that to 25 years of veteran handicapping greatness. You can find him mostly in the shadows at the Red Rock or Aliante casinos wondering if the over is cashing on any given Sunday.

All photographic images used for editorial content have been licensed from the Associated Press.

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