The Vikings (1-3) opened as 7.5-point home favorites over the Lions (0-4) for their Week 5 matchup, but with a lot of money going on Minnesota, perhaps due to Detroit's injury woes, the spread has climbed to 10 points throughout the week.
This will be the Vikings' tenth game as double-digit favorites in the Mike Zimmer era (since 2014). Here's a look at the previous nine and how they ended up.
- 2017 Week 8: 11-point favorites at Browns (London) — Won by 17
- 2017 Week 15: 12.5-point favorites vs. Bengals — Won by 27
- 2017 Week 17: 13.5-point favorites vs. Bears — Won by 13
- 2018 Week 3: 16.5-point favorites vs. Bills — Lost by 21
- 2018 Week 6: 10-point favorites vs. Cardinals — Won by 10
- 2019 Week 8: 16.5-point favorites vs. Washington — Won by 10
- 2019 Week 11: 10-point favorites vs. Broncos — Won by 4
- 2019 Week 14: 12-point favorites vs. Lions — Won by 13
- 2020 Week 13: 10.5-point favorites vs. Jaguars — Won by 3
As you can see, the Vikings are just 3-5-1 against the spread as double-digit favorites, including 2-5-1 at U.S. Bank Stadium and 1-5-1 in their last seven. The most recent time they covered in that scenario came against the Lions two years ago.
Even with that context in mind, I think it's fair to expect the Vikings to cover in this game. The Lions are riddled with injuries and severely lacking talent on both sides of the ball. The Vikings need this win to keep their season alive, so there's no chance of them coming out and not taking this game seriously. The Vikings are 6-0 against the Lions with Kirk Cousins at QB, winning all but one of those games by double digits.
Remember, this is a Lions team that has trailed by 18 or more in three of its four games and a Vikings team that should be at least 2-2. Talent-wise, this game shouldn't be close. It's entirely possible that the Vikings come out flat and underperform, but at least on paper, they should be able to cover the ten-point spread.
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