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Week 1 NFL expert picks: Analysts split on Lions-Cardinals

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Here’s how experts outside of Pride of Detroit are picking the Lions’ Week 1 game.

NFL: Arizona Cardinals at Detroit Lions Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports

Week 1 is easily the toughest week in the NFL to predict. There is no film to analyze, no data to pick apart. You can do your best to draw conclusions from the preseason or the season before, but that will always get you in trouble in the end.

And even when we think we “know” these teams, they will end up surprising us. A 9-7 New York Giants team will end up rattling off four postseason wins on their way to a Super Bowl ring. An 0-14 Cleveland Browns team will sneak by with a win to avoid a winless season. The point is, anything can happen and no one is very good at predicting it.

Then there are “expert picks.” Everyone likes to bill their own picks as expertly chosen, when the truth is Vegas odds are likely more accurate than any expert picker you’ll find. Everything else is just throwing crap against the wall and seeing what sticks. Still, it’s always interesting to see what the national media thinks of certain matchups.

So here’s who pickers are choosing in the Detroit Lions’ Week 1 matchup against the Arizona Cardinals.

National analysts:

ESPN: 5 of 9 picked Lions
CBS Sports: 2 of 8 picked Lions
SB Nation: 5 of 8 picked Lions
Pro Football Focus: 2 of 9 picked Lions
Sports Illustrated: 3 of 6 picked Lions

Total: 17 of 40 picked Lions (42.5%)

Local writers:

MLive: 2 of 2 picked Lions
Freep: 0 of 1 picked Lions
Detroit News: 3 of 5 picked Lions
Detroit Jock City: 4 of 8 picked Lions
Pride of Detroit: 7 of 9 picked Lions

Total: 16 of 25 picked Lions (64%)