This is one of those sneaky games where you have one team in Minnesota who is reeling after a hot start and another team that is finally starting to fire on all cylinders after a rough start to the season.
So the issue here is to figure out if the trends will continue in opposite directions, or will the Vikings be able to get back on the right track and get after a Lions team that has more weapons than they know what to do with.
Christian Ponder has been struggling to get over the century mark through the air in two of the past three weeks, and with all-everything superstar Percy Harvin out of the lineup with a high ankle sprain, life is not exactly getting easier for the second year pivot. Look for Kyle Rudolph to get back involved in the attack after a few slow weeks, but Jenkins and Simpson don't exactly inspire confidence in the offense.
On the other side we have Matty Staff and the Lions who finally found a ground attack to balance out their aerial weapons that they are famous for. Megatron is banged up and has not been his usual dangerous self, but Titus Young and Ryan Broyles have picked up the pieces and developed a solid chemistry with Stafford in recent weeks.
But it is the ground assault that the Lions have started to establish that could get them into the postseason and help the entire offense reach their potential. After Jahvid Best was sidelined with reoccurring concussion issues, Mikel Leshoure was given the job but struggled out of the gate. But now that Joique Bell has found his way into the attack as well, with his pass catching ability as an added bonus, the Lions finally are able to offer something in the way of balance to their attack.
The Lions defensive line received all sorts of praise in recent years, especially after Suh's impressive rookie season. But the unit has taken a step back on the surface as of late. Second year player Nick Fairley is playing well on the inside, but they have been struggling to get much pressure off of the edge.
Issues in the secondary is something that the Lions have been dealing with for years. The longer that they go with the best player available on the board as opposed to drafting for need, the longer that they will get exposed down the field. They need to get a corner of two and a healthy safety. Expect the front office to invest this off season if they are serious about stopping the teams coming their way and throwing the ball all over them.
The Vikings have Adrian Peterson, yes. But without Harvin, the Lions will be able to stack the box and bring added pressure to an already rattled Ponder. Expect the Lions to put up points in a big way in the 'Dome and walk away with an easy victory.
Pick of the Week record: 4-5.
Last week was a bad day for the books, and taking a dog with the Browns against the Ravens looked safe until a few minutes left in the 4th. Cleveland stuck in it until a score got called back and Torey Smith put the game away late for the Ravens.
Image: November 14, 2009 - Source: Elsa/Getty Images North America via zimbio.com.