In one of the more anticipated contests entering Week 16, the San Diego Chargers head to Motown to visit the Detroit Lions in a showdown of teams fighting for their playoff lives, and, recently anyway, doing it well.
The Chargers are coming off a game in which they absolutely decimated the Baltimore Ravens, who, at the time were the AFC's top team. Though they've had an up-and-down year, and find themselves at 7-7 with two games to go, they're still very much in contention for the AFC West crown, and, if other teams slip up big time, potentially a Wild Card spot.
The Detroit Lions, on the other hand, need only to beat the Chargers to clinch a Wild Card berth, and they've proven adept at beating teams with inferior records. Their losses have come against the Packers, 49ers, Saints, Falcons and Bear, when they had Jay Cutler. Other than the Bears, all four of those teams will be in the playoffs, so there's precedent for expecting them to come away with a win, especially at home.
The experts, however, are for the most part, ignoring that precedent. They're buying into the Chargers' December magic. Only Chris Mortensen picked the Lions at ESPN, just one of the five CBS experts chose the Lions. Cooler heads seem to have prevailed at Yahoo, where only Les Carpenter picked the Chargers.