NFL Week 14 - Minnesota Vikings v Detroit Lions (Monday 5am AEDT)
The Minnesota Vikings suffered a heartbreaking defeat last week on Monday Night Football, but they should rebound against the Detroit Lions when they clash at U.S. Bank Stadium on Monday morning.
The Vikings had won six of their last seven games before falling 37-30 away to the Seattle Seahawks last week. Quarterback Kirk Cousins had a solid game going 22-of-38 for 276 passing yards with two touchdowns and one interception.
Running back Dalvin Cook had a difficult evening (nine carries for 29 yards) before suffering a shoulder injury in the third quarter.
After a sluggish start to the season, Cousins has been terrific throwing 23 touchdown passes compared to four interceptions. If Cook is not 100 percent, Cousins will take advantage of his receiving weapons; notably wide receiver Stefon Diggs.
The Lions' campaign has fallen apart after a bright start. Five straight losses and eight defeats in nine games has seen the Lions fall to the bottom of the NFC North division. The losing streak has coincided with quarterback Matthew Stafford being sidelined due to a back/hip complaint.
Rookie quarterback David Blough will be at the helm of the Lions' offence and he will be under immense pressure to lead scoring drives. Only the Arizona Cardinals and Tampa Bay Buccaneers allow more passing yards than the Detroit Lions, which should allow the Vikings to score plenty of points.
The Vikings should easily account for the injury-hit Lions.
NFL Week 14 - Oakland Raiders v Tennessee Titans (Monday 8:25am AEDT)
Tennessee Titans' pursuit of the AFC South division title will receive a tough test against Oakland Raiders at the RingCentral Coliseum on Monday morning.
The Titans are 5-1 since Tannehill replaced Marcus Mariota as the starting quarterback. After winning all four of his home starts, the Titans were victorious 31-17 away to the Indianapolis Colts last week.
Tannehill was not spectacular - 17-of-22 for 182 passing yards and two touchdowns - but he was ably supported by running back Derrick Henry. For the third straight game, Henry had a monster performance. He rushed for 149 yards, and a touchdown, on 26 carries against the Colts. This will be worrisome for the Raiders as they allow the fifth-most points in the NFL per game (27).
The Titans' defence shone last week with two interceptions of Colts quarterback Jacoby Brissett, while the special teams blocked two of Adam Vinatieri's kicks with one of those returned for a touchdown. The past fortnight for the Raiders has been shocking as they have been outscored 74-12 in road losses to the New York Jets (34-3) and Kansas City Chiefs (40-9). The Raiders are back home, where they are 4-1 this season, but they are battling injuries and poor form.
Rookie running back Josh Jacobs is battling with a fractured right shoulder, while quarterback Derek Carr has also fallen away with two touchdown passes and four interceptions in the last three games.
Despite Oakland's impressive home record, Tennessee are playing the better football recently.