The euphoria of the NFL Draft has collided with the reality that the Detroit Lions are still a team that needs time to mature into a winner. All of the Michigan sports betting apps list the Lions as underdogs in their season opener at Ford Field.
On Thursday night, the NFL released the 2022-23 schedules, and the Lions will begin the season at home on Sept. 11 against the Philadelphia Eagles. Despite the addition of No. 2 overall draft pick DE Aidan Hutchinson and other notable selections in last month’s draft, expectations are tempered for the Lions, who were 3-13-1 last season.
History is also working against the Lions. Last October, the Eagles had a good ol’ time in Detroit when they treated the Lions more like pussycats in a 44-6 victory. It was the eighth loss to start the season for coach Dan Campbell’s team, which snapped a losing streak the following week with a tie against Pittsburgh.
With Caesars Michigan, BetRivers Michigan, and FanDuel Michigan all listing the Lions as underdogs of more than a field goal against the Eagles, the opportunity to grab a nice price is now if you think Detroit will start the Hutchinson Era with a “W.”
Season-long wager: Lions Season Wins Total — Could be a good year to be the over
Lions vs. Eagles Week One Odds
|Caesars||Lions +3.5 (-110)|
Eagles -3.5 (-110)
|Over 47 (-110)
Under 47 (-110)
|BetRivers||Lions +3.5 (-110)|
Eagles -3.5 (-110)
|Over 46.5 (-110)
Under 46.5 (-110)
|FanDuel||Lions +4.5 (-110)|
Eagles -4.5 (-110)
|Over 46 (-110)
Under 46 (-110)
Because the point spreads were released so long before the game is to be played, there are still some significant differences. It likely will change the closer it gets to the game, so if you want the best number you can get with the Lions, it may be time to pounce. If you want to bet the Eagles, you might get a better number closer in early September.
Seeing as it will be the first NFL game for Hutchinson, who was born just a short Ford Focus ride up the highway from Detroit in Plymouth, excitement will be high for the Lions.
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Detroit Lions Player Futures
It’s been a while since the Lions had two rookies arrive from top college programs in the same season, but Hutchinson and Williams will need to calibrate their winning meters. The NFL delivers losses at a much more ego-deflating clip than on elite college campuses like Ann Arbor and Tuscaloosa. If Detroit can inch its way to 7-8 wins, it will be considered a success in Campbell’s second season in the Motor City.
Both Hutchinson and Williams, a speedy wide receiver, are among the rookies with lower odds on individual NFL awards.
BetMGM Michigan has Hutchinson at +450 to win AP Defensive Rookie of the Year, and Williams is listed at +1000 to win the AP Offensive Rookie of the Year.
Williams is recovering from a torn ACL, and though his rose-colored glass-wearing doctors insist their patient will be fully recovered by Week 1, that’s about as likely as Will Smith and Chris Rock getting Detroit Coney’s together.
AP Photo/Rick Osentoski