For the first time in awhile, as could be expected, the Detroit Lions are a betting favorite this week.
During last year’s 3-13-1 campaign, the first year of the latest rebuild, it’s no surprise the Detroit Lions were not favored in any games. The Lions have not been a regular betting favorite for probably the last 30 years–or at least most of that time. So any drought without being favored is not too surprising.
Despite last week’s loss to the Philadelphia Eagles and facing the 1-0 Washington Commanders, the Lions are narrowly favored in Week 2. As noted by ESPN’s Eric Woodyard, it’s been a little bit since the Lions were favored in a game.
After playing in 24 consecutive games as an underdog, the longest active streak in the NFL, the Lions are currently 2 1/2-point favorites against the Commanders, according to Caesars Sportsbook.
The New York Giants, owners of the second-longest streak without being a favorite (15 games), are also favored this week over the Carolina Panthers.
The last time Detroit was a favorite was Nov. 22, 2020, Week 11 of that season, when they were favored by one point on the road over a Panthers team that started PJ Walker under center. The Lions went on to lose 20-0, in one of Matthew Stafford’s worst games as their quarterback.
It’s been even longer since the Detroit Lions were favored over a winning team
The Commanders are 1-0–a winning record one game into a new season. So this note from Jeff Risdon of Lions Wire is worth mentioning.
Going back a bit further, the Lions have not been favored in a game where the opponent has a winning record since Week 7 of the 2018 season against the Miami Dolphins.
The Lions beat the Dolphins on the road in that 2018 game, 35-21. It made them 3-3, on their way to 6-10 in Matt Patricia’s first season as head coach.