To close out the Week 15 NFL schedule, the Baltimore Ravens will visit the Detroit Lions. Both teams are in the thick of the playoff race, and the outcomes from Sunday make it an even more important game for their postseason hopes.
The Ravens came into the weekend with a share of the lead for the final AFC wild card spot. They held the No.6 seed with the tiebreaker, and they’ll need a victory on Monday to stay in the playoffs. The Miami Dolphins are currently a half-game ahead of Baltimore, following their win over the New England Patriots.
Both teams that Detroit is battling in their division picked up wins on Sunday. The Lions own the tiebreaker, but they’re a half-game behind the Chicago Bears, who defeated the Cleveland Browns. The Green Bay Packers’ comeback win over the Dallas Cowboys put them at 7-6-1, right behind the 7-6 Lions.
At home, Detroit has the clear advantage. They have been upset a few times in their own building, but the Ravens have been especially bad on the road, going 1-5. Other than the season opener against the Denver Broncos, all of their road games have been decided by one score.
"I think we've won the close games at home and we haven't won them on the road. That's the bottom line," head coach John Harbaugh said. "We've done the things we needed to do to win tight games at home and we haven't done the things we've needed to do on the road. It's us."
The location of each game may be the biggest determining factor in Baltimore’s win-loss record. For the Lions, the running game might have the biggest impact on the outcome. Reggie Bush is expected to play through a calf injury, which is welcome news to Detroit. When Bush has individual success, the Lions are usually on the winning side.
Bush has missed two games because of injuries, in which Detroit has gone 1-1. In the six wins that the running back has participated in, he’s rushed for 621 yards and caught 29 balls for 295 yards. He has eight total touchdowns in those games. In five losses, Bush has not reached the end zone. He’s rushed for 388 fewer yards and has 13 fewer catches.
Player To Watch: Reggie Bush
Time: 8:30 p.m. Monday
Place: Ford Field
Online Stream: WatchESPN
Updated Betting Odds: Lions by 6
Prediction: Lions over Ravens, 30-20