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Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Detroit Lions Point Spread - Pick

Pittsburgh Steelers (5-2 SU, 4-3 ATS) vs. Detroit Lions (3-3 SU, 3-3 ATS)
Week 8 NFL
Date/Time: Sunday Night Football, October 29, 2017 at 8:30PM EST
Where: Ford Field, Detroit, Michigan

By Loot, NFL Football Handicapper,

Point Spread: PIT -3/DET +3
Over/Under Total: 45

The Pittsburgh Steelers come to Ford Field to face the Detroit Lions on Sunday Night Football. The Lions are in need of something good coming off the bye, which followed two straight losses that dropped them to 3-3 on the season. In their last game, they lost to the New Orleans Saints, 52-38. The bye should help, as some key guys are banged up, including Matthew Stafford, who is dealing with an ankle injury. They host an incoming Steelers team that seems to have clicked into gear at just the right time. After some rough moments this season, they have scored two straight wins, including a nice 29-14 win at home over the Bengals on Sunday. They look to keep the good momentum going this week, but it won't be easy in a tough road spot against a desperate and rested Detroit team.

After a 2-0 start, the Lions have lost three out of four. Over the past few seasons, we've seen some streaky patches from the Lions and they hope to put an end to their losing ways this week at home. Despite the comeback they made against New Orleans in their last game, things seemed to bottom out to some degree, as the Lions were down 45-10 midway through the 3rd quarter. They deserve some credit for getting it to 45-38 and having the ball with a chance to tie it. But at the end of the day, they have some things to work out on defense, where their form has dropped considerably over the past few weeks.

Again Stafford will welcome the time to get his ankle feeling a bit better. He went for over 300 yards against the Saints, but three picks were costly, with two returned for touchdowns. Marvin Jones and Golden Tate both had 96 yards and a TD. But they have lost Tate for a number of weeks with a shoulder injury. Theo Reddick caught five balls and the Detroit run-game, while not striking fear into the hearts of opponent, is at least a contributing part of the offense this season, with Ameer Abdullah over 400 yards on the ground. Granted, all of Detroit's production came as they were out-of-character, trying to chase down an opponent who was far ahead, but maybe they found some things in that loss to use moving forward. There have been times this season where the offense has been fairly stagnant.

The Detroit defense has shined against some of the struggling offenses they have faced this season, but against offenses like Atlanta, Carolina, and the Saints, they've been torched for the most part. They are good up-front, with Ziggy Ansah and a rising force in A'Shawn Robinson. In the middle, they are getting good play from Tahir Whitehead and promising rookie Jarrad Davis. In the secondary, Glover Quin (questionable) and Darius Slay are key playmakers, but they need help and opposing aerial-attacks have thrived against them in spots this season.


Hats off to the Steelers for getting to 5-2 with a lot of problems. After losing 30-9 at home to the Jaguars, it was hard to find the silver lining, but a road win over a then-unbeaten Chiefs team and a nice division win over a Bengals team that had won two in a row is big for this team. The offense seems to be clicking better, with the defense having really been an asset in their wins this season, as the offense was laboring. They have given up just 27 total points in their last two games and are really playing well.

Ben Roethlisberger was good on Sunday, throwing two touchdowns, while cleanly running the offense with no turnovers on the day. The explosion in form for Le'Veon Bell has been big in getting things turned around for this offense and the team. He had a workmanlike performance of 134 yards on 35 carries with 58 yards receiving. Roethlisberger hit Antonio Brown with a score, while also connecting with rookie WR JuJu Smith Schuster with another touchdown throw. Darrius Heyward-Bey also had a big 44-yard reception and it would be big if someone reliable could help Brown, with Martavis Bryant very quiet through 7 games and apparently not happy with things. This is a time where guys like Eli Rogers, Smith-Schuster, or Heyward-Bey could really boost their stock.

It's a matter of time before people realize the defense is the best part of the Steelers. The middle is a difference-making part of a lot of games, with Ryan Shazier and TJ Watt making a lot of big plays. On Sunday, Watt, Tyson Alualu, Cameron Heyward, and Bud Dupree all had sacks. The secondary has been doing well and against the Bengals, William Gay and Joe Haden each recorded interceptions. Only twice this season was a team in any way really successful against this bunch, with the Bears scoring 23 on them in overtime and Jacksonville scoring 30, with the aid of two defensive touchdowns. In their five wins, the Steelers have given up a total of 63 points.

On one hand, you see a surging Steelers team and on the other, a Detroit Lions bunch that looks to be in one of their funks. That might be too stark of a contrast and not paint an accurate view of reality. Pittsburgh is not above lapsing back into the diminished version of themselves, especially in an out-of-conference matchup against a rested Detroit team that is pining to get things back on the right track. We see a lot of offense this week and we like the "over."

Loot's Prediction to Cover the Point Spread: I'm betting that the Steelers vs. Lions game will go over 45 points. Tired of your credit card not working for sportsbook deposit? End that problem today and bet the Pittsburgh vs. Detroit by signing up at Bovada Sportsbook where your credit card WILL work and where you'll receive a generous 50% sign-up bonus!

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