It’s gameday and we’re in for a big game today. The Detroit Lions will be attempting to move to an improbable 5-3 record at the midway point of the season after all seemed lost four weeks ago at 1-3. In their way is a Houston Texans team that is fighting to stay atop of a flimsy AFC South division.
As pointed out in our On Paper preview, this is a unique matchup. Both teams’ strengths—the Lions pass offense and the Texans pass defense—fill face each other, while their worst units—the Lions pass defense and the Texans pass offense—will also be at ends with each other.
This may not be a marquee matchup between two popular franchises, but it is one of four games on Sunday that features two teams with winning records. So today’s Question of the Day is:
Which player in Lions-Texans will be the MVP on Sunday?
My answer: It would be easy to go with Matthew Stafford, but I don’t want to be boring. So I’m going with Theo Riddick, who is scheduled to return for the first time since Week 5. The Texans have a decent defense, but their strength is in their secondary. Houston does not defend the run well—Football Outsiders ranks them 26th. But I don’t even see Riddick as having his biggest impact in the running game. With the Texans all tied up trying to stop the trio of Marvin Jones, Golden Tate and Anquan Boldin (and likely Eric Ebron, too), that will leave a huge opening for Riddick in the passing game.
Since Riddick isn’t even labeled as questionable for this game, I don’t think the Lions will have to ease him in. I think he catches at least five passes on Sunday for 60+ yards.