Detroit Lions Are Underdogs For Fifth Straight Week, This Time Against Minnesota Vikings

Written By Matt Schoch on October 3, 2021 - Last Updated on October 10, 2021

The Detroit Lions will be underdogs in Week 5 for the fifth time this season.

After Sunday’s 24-14 loss in Chicago, the Lions will play their third and final NFC North road game in a span of four weeks, this time at the Minnesota Vikings for a 1 p.m. game.

Michigan sportsbooks were listing the Lions as 10-point underdogs at DraftKingsCaesars Sportsbook, BetMGM and PointsBet. Detroit was 9.5-point underdogs on Monday, according to FanDuel Sportsbook and BetRivers. When lines were released this summer, the Vikings were 8.5 point favorites.

By Sunday, even after key injury news for Minnesota, the line had settled to 10 points across the board.

The Lions were the second-biggest underdog on the Week 5 board, trailing only Miami (+11 at Tampa Bay).

Books had the over/under at 49.5 points on Friday, nearly all the way across all sportsbooks.

Since then, Minnesota has started the season at 1-3, losing 14-7 on Sunday against the Cleveland Browns.

Detroit Lions at Minnesota Vikings: NFL Week 5 Odds

Injury situation appears to be getting better for Lions

After losing Romeo Okwara for the season last week against Chicago, the trends were good for the Lions in the medical room this week.

When the game update was released on Friday, no active Lions were listed as out. All of Trey Flowers, T.J. Hockenson, Penei Sewell, D’Andre Swift and Jamaal Williams were listed as questionable.

Sadly, that’s an improvement for a team that has already lost Jeff Okudah, Tyrell Williams and Taylor Decker for significant time.

Lions squander chances in Week 4 loss at Chicago

The Lions came into Soldier Field on Sunday to play a reeling Bears team with a rudderless offense.

Bears rookie Justin Fields had a breakout game of sorts. The Ohio State alum was 12-of-18 passing for 215 yards. He was intercepted once by the Lions, who were 3-point underdogs in the game.

Meanwhile, Detroit was mostly efficient on offense, but squandered early red-zone opportunities. Quarterback Jared Goff and the offense entered the red zone four times and did not come away with any points.

Lions coach Dan Campbell was aggressive, going for it twice on fourth down and missing it both times. On the bright side, Kalif Raymond had two touchdown catches in the loss.

Detroit previously opened the season with losses to San Francisco, Green Bay and Baltimore. The Lions are now 2-2 against the spread.

Dalvin Cook’s health a question for time being

The most important development this season for the Vikings has been the health of star running back Dalvin Cook, who is officially listed as questionable for the game. Cook was announced as inactive for the game on Sunday morning.

The Florida State alum missed Minnesota’s Week 3 game with an injured ankle and was listed as questionable for Sunday against the Browns. Cook did play but had just nine carries for 34 yards in limited action.

The Vikings feature Michigan State alumnus Kirk Cousins at quarterback. The Holland native was a source of controversy this offseason, drawing criticism from coach Mike Zimmer for his decision to not get vaccinated.

Photo by Tony Ding/AP
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Matt Schoch

A Michigan native, Matt has worked at newspapers in Michigan, Missouri and the Virgin Islands. A versatile sports reporter, Matt has covered sailing on the Great Lakes, cricket in the Caribbean, high school and pro playoffs, and the Olympics in Rio. He's also the host of the Locked On Pistons Podcast and producer of a documentary on Emoni Bates. A former blackjack dealer, Matt has studied the industry from all sides.

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