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NFL Betting Preview for December 26, 2010: Detroit Lions vs. Miami Dolphins (-3.5)

Written by Andrew Scofield   
Monday, 20 December 2010 18:54

Lions vs. Dolphins Betting OddsBetting Overview:

It was generally accepted by the NFL betting community that the Detroit Lions are making the right moves to rebuild into a winning team. It may be a year or two before the Lions start putting up consistent winning NFL scores, but the NFL predictions surrounding the Lions this season did not expect much from Detroit. It turns out that the Detroit Lions are doing a good job rebuilding, but injuries are slowing their development.

The Miami Dolphins, on the other hand, were expected to be in that AFC East tangle with the New England Patriots and New York Jets. People were not going as far as to say that the Dolphins would overtake the Jets or Patriots, but they were expected to compete. As the Jets and Patriots continue to battle for the AFC East title, the Dolphins were eliminated from the playoffs in week 15 by the Buffalo Bills. A Miami team that looked to have many of the necessary pieces in place to win, now looks like it needs to start over.

Perhaps the biggest disappointments in the Miami offense are quarterback Chad Henne and running back Ronnie Brown. Henne ended last season as the clear-cut starter for the Dolphins. He was confident, accurate and made good decisions. By the halfway point of the season, Henne was benched for Chad Pennington and the Miami offense was in turmoil. Ronnie Brown only has 683 rushing yards and four touchdowns after 14 games played this season. Whatever spark the Miami offense ended the 2009 season with did not turn into a roaring flame in 2010.

The Detroit Lions looked to be on their way on offense. Second-year quarterback Matthew Stafford was developing into one of the brightest young stars in the league, wide receiver Calvin Johnson was coming into his own and the Lions had picked up talented running back Jahvid Best in the 2010 draft. By week 10, Matthew Stafford was out for the season and Jahvid Best was experiencing his own set of injury problems that were greatly limiting his playing time. But even with all of that, the Lions are still hanging in to every game they play. Detroit’s recent win over the NFC powerhouse Green Bay Packers was an indication that this team is headed in the right direction.

It will not take long for the rest of the league to realize that the Detroit Lions are building one of the best defensive units in football. The defensive line, led by rookie defensive tackle and prime candidate for NFL defensive rookie of the year Ndamukong Suh, pressured Green Bay quarterback Aaron Rodgers into game-changing mistake. The Detroit linebackers are able to contain almost any running game in the league. Give this defense one or two years and this will be considered one of the best in football.

When you look at the Dolphins problems this season, you start to realize that the offense has let down the defense. The Dolphins have the fourth ranked defense in the league giving up an average of only 298 total yards per game. The Miami secondary was more than capable of keeping the pass-happy Buffalo Bills under control. The Dolphins were also able to shut down a Buffalo running attack that had gained almost 200 yards just the week before against the Cleveland Browns.

The Bottom Line:
This comes down to which offense is more capable of moving against the other team’s defense. The Miami offense has become completely powerless to move the ball, and that will cost them their second loss in a row.

BSN Sports Free Pick: Detroit Lions

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