Minnesota Vikings at Detroit Lions Matchup Preview 10/20/19: Analysis, Depth Charts, Daily Fantasy

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The Vikings are heading to Detroit to take on the 2-2-1 Lions this Sunday. The Vikings had a huge game last week against the Eagles. Kirk Cousins threw 22 of 29 for 333 yards, four touchdowns, and an interception. Dalvin Cook also had a rushing touchdown, contributing to their 38 point performance against the Eagles. However, this Lions secondary has been playing better than the Eagles secondary. It’s far from guaranteed that Kirk Cousins is going to have such a great game this Sunday. Unfortunately, last week didn’t go as well for the Lions. The Lions lost to the Packers by one point, done in by a couple of very controversial calls. The Lions have looked very strong this year, and their two losses can, potentially, be attributed to bad calls. Overall, I’m expecting the Vikings to win this one due to their strong run game and the numbers the Lions allowed on the ground on Sunday, but it’s going to be a close matchup. Click here for more details and betting information for the Vikings @ Lions matchup.

TV Schedule:

Date: Sunday, October 20th, 2019
Time: 10:00 AM PST
Location: Ford Field, Detroit, MI
Coverage: FOX

Injury Report

Vikings: Ben Gedeon (Q), Riley Reiff (Q), Kentrell Brothers (Q), Josh Kline (Q)
Lions: Amani Oruwariye (Q), Mike Daniels (Q), Quandre Diggs (Q), Da’Shawn Hand (Q), A’Shawn Robinson (Q), Darius Slay (Q), Logan Thomas (Q), Rick Wagner (Q)

Minnesota Vikings Analysis

Minnesota VikingsPrevious to their game against the Eagles, Kirk Cousins and the Vikings passing game was under some scrutiny. Fans were concerned he wasn’t playing as well as he should be, considering how much he’s getting paid. He has a lot of weapons on offense with Diggs and Thielen, so fans were upset with his inability to capitalize on their potential. Diggs was also starting to fuel rumors about a trade. Almost as if he was trying to make it up to him, Cousins gave Diggs a huge game on Sunday. Diggs had 7 receptions for 167 yards and three touchdowns on the day. If that’s not going to make you happy with your quarterback, I’m not sure what will. Despite the potential of their passing game, I think the Vikings are going to be getting their win over the ground on Sunday. The Lions allowed the Packers to run for 170 yards on Sunday. Dalvin Cook has been incredible for the Vikings. The Vikings get an average 5.1 yards per carry, 3rd highest in the league. Cook is looking to have a huge game against the Lions, and is going to be instrumental if they’re going to win.

The Lions are primarily a passing team, which is good for the Vikings. The Vikings are ranked 7th in the league for fewest passing yards allowed per game, with just 218.8. They’ve also been pretty strong against the run and are therefore a pretty strong defense all around. I think the Vikings are favorites in this matchup, because I believe their defense is going to be strong enough to hold the Lions to the point where they can outscore them on Sunday.

Minnesota Vikings Depth Chart

QB: Kirk Cousins
RB1: Dalvin Cook
RB2: Alexander Mattison
WR1: Stefon Diggs
WR2: Chad Beebe
WR3: Adam Thielen
TE: Kyle Rudolph

Detroit Lions Analysis

Detroit LionsThe Lions had some back luck with the referees last week. Against the Packers, two hands to the face calls on Trey Flowers practically lost them the game. Looking back on the calls, there was no foul; the calls were bad, and the outcome of the game most likely would have been swapped if the referees had made the correct call. The case was similar in their game the week before, as well. So, their 2-2-1 record doesn’t exactly reflect their success this year, considering that if the referees had been accurate they might be 4-0-1 on the season. The biggest problems the Lions are facing this Sunday is Dalvin Cook. The Lions have been pretty weak against the run this season. They let the Packers rack up 170 rushing yards for an average of 5.9 yards per carry. For the season on the whole the Lions defense is the third worst when it comes to yards per carry, allowing an average of 5.1. Dalvin Cook is going to have a field day with this Lions defense if they can’t figure out a way to make it harder for teams to run against them. And with a powerful player like Dalvin Cook running through their defense, it’ll be hard for the Lions to play catchup on offense.

On offense, if the Lions can get their run game going, they’ll have a better chance at staying in the game. They haven’t been running it a lot this season, but the Vikings have a pretty impressive pass defense. If the Vikings can control the Lion’s passing, they have a chance at totally shutting down their offense. Therefore, developing the run game is going to be extremely important for the Lions so they can run a multi-faceted offense. If they can’t get their run game going, and their passing is shut down, they’ll have a hard time keeping up with the points the Vikings can put up.

Detroit Lions Depth Chart

QB: Matthew Stafford
RB1: Kerryon Johnson
RB2: Paul Perkins
WR1: Marvin Jones
WR2: Kenny Golladay
WR3: Danny Amendola
TE: T.J. Hockenson

Daily Fantasy

Dalvin Cook is a must-start if you have him. I have a feeling he’s going to be running through this Lions on Sunday and is sure to get a ton of points for your fantasy roster. While I don’t expect the Vikings to completely shut down this Lions offense, which has been powerful throughout the season, I’m expecting this to be a low scoring, defensive game. If you wanted to start a receiver in this matchup, maybe Thielen or Diggs are a good choice, and even Golladay if you wanted to. Golladay is looking at a potentially big game as the Lions’ go to receiver, so he’ll probably get a lot of targets even if it is a defensive game on Sunday. He had a big game against the Packers, with 121 yards on 5 receptions, so even if the Lions are limited on the pass, he can make an impact on few receptions.

I'm a student at UC Santa Barbara studying English. I've been watching football for almost my entire life. A couple of years ago, I started to really get into statistics and became a lot more interested in the NFL and have been really excited about it ever since.

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