Detroit News predictions: Lions vs. Falcons

Detroit News

The Detroit News
 |  The Detroit News

Justin Rogers, Rod Beard, John Niyo and Bob Wojnowski of The Detroit News predict the outcome of Sunday’s Lions at Falcons game (1 p.m., Fox, 760).

Justin Rogers: Both teams got on track with convincing wins last week, but there’s still reason to be skeptical about both defenses. The Lions haven’t seen such a well-rounded passing attack this season and their young cornerback tandem is likely going to have trouble bottling up Julio Jones and Calvin Ridley. Falcons, 31-26

Rod Beard: Both the Lions and Falcons got big victories last week and both team still have something to play for: Atlanta played well for interim coach Raheem Morris and if that momentum can carry over, they could salvage their season. Both defenses are bad, but the Falcons have shown more of an ability to generate offense. Logic says the Falcons win at home — and we should all trust the logic — but there will be a surprise. Lions, 21-20

More: Detroit News scouting report: Lions at Falcons

John Niyo: The Falcons got healthy last week at the Vikings’ expense. But that big win might be a bit misleading, as Minnesota basically handed Atlanta the game with three first-half interceptions and one epic red-zone flop. The Falcons’ pass defense still gives up too many explosive plays, so Matthew Stafford could have a big day. And if Detroit’s defense holds up its end of the bargain again, the Lions can get back to .500. Lions, 31-24

Bob Wojnowski: If the Lions are serious about clawing into playoff contention, this is the game to find out. Atlanta is 1-5 and fired its coach, but still has Matt Ryan and Julio Jones and the capability of scoring lots of points. And the Lions’ defense, coming off a fine effort against a bad team, still has the capability of surrendering lots of points. This will be a shootout between Matthew Stafford and Ryan, and expect it to come down to the final possession. Falcons, 34-30

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