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Betting Preview NFL International Series

Two teams that are going in the opposite direction in the race for the NFC playoffs will meet on Sunday, when the Detroit Lions play the Atlanta Falcons at Wembley Stadium, in the second of three NFL games to be played in London this year.


Detroit Lions (5-2) vs. Atlanta Falcons (2-5), Sunday, October 26, 9:30 AM. ET. FOX.


The Lions have been known as an offensive powerhouse for the last few years, but they are finding ways to win games this year with their improved defense. Led by one of the best defensive lines in the league, the Lions are the 7th best team against the pass, and the 2nd best against the run, which is taking a lot of pressure away from their offense, and helping them win close games that they would have lost in the past, like their game against the New Orleans Saints on Sunday.


On the offensive side of things, Calvin Johnson has had to miss the past two games due to injury, and his status is still day to day. Offseason acquisition Golden Tate has picked up the slack for the ailing Johnson, and is currently leading the team in receiving yards. Their running game is still a work in progress, but they need to improve quickly, because they are the worst in the league.


The Falcons were expected to compete for the NFC South title this season, after an injury filled 2013 season that gave them their first losing season in the Mike Smith era. They started out 2-1, and scored the most points of any team this season against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in week three, but they have lost four straight games since then.


The Falcons are still one of the best offensive teams in the NFL, led by Matt Ryan, who is on pace for another 4,500 yard and 30 touchdown season. Their running game is not as efficient as they would like, but they are still averaging 98 yards per game on the ground, which is 23rd in the league, and the Falcons have the fourth most yards in the league this season.


The Falcons defense is another story, they allow opponents to throw for 274 yards against them, which is 29th in the league, they allow opponents to run for 137 yards per game, which is 27th in the league, and allow opponents to score 28.4 points per game, which is the third most in the NFL.


The Falcons will continue to struggle to win games if they cannot find a solution to their defensive woes, because they will be unable to win a lot of games if they get into a shootout with their opponents, if their defense cannot stop their opponents.


Game Line: The Lions are favored to win the game by 3.5 points, the Over/Under is 47 points.


Personal Pick: The Lions have been winning with defense this season, and will be able to slow down the Falcons and get the win.

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