Lions To Notch Second Win Against Giants

Stafford was on form in the opener

The Detroit Lions and the New York Giants had contrasting fortunes in week one of the 2017 NFL season.

The Lions put in a fine performance on home soil to defeat the Arizona Cardinals. Jim Caldwell’s men struggled against quality outfits in the last campaign, but proved a point in their opener with their triumph.

New York were one of the sides that destroyed the Lions’ hopes of winning the NFC North last term. The Giants’ defense shut down Matt Stafford and company at MetLife Stadium, limiting them to just six points.

Head coach Ben McAdoo will be desperate for a similar performance from his side in their home opener. The Giants got off to a poor start to the 2017 campaign, struggling in their defeat at the hands of the Dallas Cowboys.

Their offense failed to find their form against Dallas, who had lost a number of key defensive players in the off-season. Pressure is beginning to mount due to their issues, which date back to the last campaign.

The contest is an important for both sides, looking to create stronger identities in the 2017 season.

We’ll now break down both teams and the betting odds for the game at MetLife Stadium.

New York Giants

Manning needs to improve

Without the presence of the injured Odell Beckham Jr, the Giants offense was unable to threaten in their opener against the Cowboys. Eli Manning and company put only three points on the board in their defeat at AT&T Stadium. Their struggles on offense are a concern for McAdoo as his team have failed to score over 20 points since their win over the Cleveland Browns last November.

McAdoo was brought to the Giants to revive their fortunes of the offensive side of the ball. However, they have regressed significantly, despite having All-Pro wide out Beckham on their roster.

The running game has offered nothing over the past two seasons, placing more pressure on Manning to fire. The quarterback is starting to show the signs of age as his pocket presence and throws downfield are not as strong as they used to be.

Unless he can find his peak form soon, the Giants may be pressed into looking for his successor. Manning’s performances over the course of the campaign will be a major storyline to follow even beyond this fixture.

New York’s defense was the foundation of their surge to the playoffs last season. However, they were exposed through the middle by Ezekiel Elliott in their opening-day defeat. Damon Harrison was outstanding last term, but he was part of the line that allowed the back to run for 104 yards.

The Giants need to control the game using their defense as their offense does look capable at the moment. They cannot afford to allow opposing teams to dictate the tempo of the game otherwise they could be in for another season of disappointment.

Detroit Lions

Stafford was on form in the opener

The Lions impressed in their opener by brushing aside the Cardinals at Ford Field. Stafford got off to a rough start with an early pick-six to Justin Bethel. However, he responded brilliantly to the adversity, producing a four-touchdown performance to guide his side to the victory.

Stafford continued his strong connection with wideout Golden Tate as the wideout recorded a 100-yard game. More importantly for the Lions, Kenny Golladay hit the ground running in his first NFL outing. The rookie receiver caught four receptions for 69 yards, with two of his catches going for strikes in the endzone.

There was a lot of pressure last season on Tate and tight end Eric Ebron to produce. If Golladay can rise to the occasion to ease the burden, Detroit could have one of the best offenses in the league. They will be put to the test against the Giants and will need all hands on deck to fire.

The Lions’ defense also thrived in the opener, notching three interceptions of Carson Palmer. Glover Quin, Tavon Wilson and Miles Killebrew were ballhawks in the secondary. They will have opportunities to succeed once again should Manning’s struggles persist.

Pressure was not forthcoming in the opener as Anthony Zettel collected Detroit’s only sack of the contest. Ziggy Ansah and the rest of the defensive line will have the opportunity to hunt down Manning and capitalise on the weaknesses on the Giants’ offensive line.

This is an important game for Caldwell’s men and beating the Giants would be huge step forward for the club. They may need the victory come the end of the season to challenge in the NFC North once again with Green Bay and Minnesota for company.

Betting Options

Even though the Giants are at home, their problems on offense are a real concern. Manning looks a shadow of the player he was two seasons ago, although he has not been helped by his line. New York’s offensive line gave up far too much pressure to the Cowboys, who are not renowned for having a talented defensive front.

The Lions do have quality on their line and they should be able to get to Manning with regularity. There are no quick options for Manning to release to other than running back Shane Vereen. Brandon Marshall struggled in his first outing for the Giants, while Sterling Shepard does not possess the talent of Beckham to get open immediately.

Without their star receiver expect the Giants to struggle once again. The Lions have the number of weapons needed to put points on the board against New York’s stoic defense. Stafford should have ample time to pick out his targets, although the quality of the secondary will not make life easy.

However, back the Lions to claim the win with odds of +135   with TopBet sportsbook. Caldwell’s men have the balance on both sides of the ball needed to close out the game. Expect a close game, but taking the Lions with the -3.5 spread at odds of +190   with Ladbrokes provides good value.

Golladay made an impact in his first match in the NFL, scoring two touchdowns. The rookie will fire again at odds of +163   with William Hill.

Tips Summary

Detroit Lions To Beat New York Giants
Monday 18th September 2017 20:30 ET (Tuesday 19th September 2017 01:30 BST)
Odds: +135

Detroit Lions To Cover -3.5 Spread
Monday 18th September 2017 20:30 ET (Tuesday 19th September 2017 01:30 BST)
Odds: +190

Kenny Golladay To Score Touchdown Anytime
Monday 18th September 2017 20:30 ET (Tuesday 19th September 2017 01:30 BST)
Odds: +163