Adrian Peterson and Detroit Lions won just five games in 2020, and while it was a two-win increase from 2019, it was their third straight season with six or fewer wins. In NFL betting, however, they were a little more successful.
The Lions finished the 2020 season with seven regular-season wins against the spread (ATS), a one-win ATS improvement from 2019, compared to nine ATS losses. Their seven ATS wins ranked 19th in the NFL, tied with seven other teams, including the Atlanta Falcons, New England Patriots, and San Francisco 49ers.
Among the seven teams with seven ATS wins, the Lions had the worst average cover plus-minus, i.e., the average number of points by which they covered each game. If, for example, the Lions covered one spread by four points in one game but failed to cover by 10 points in the next game, their average cover plus-minus would be minus-3. Detroit finished the season with an average cover of minus-5.7, the worst mark in NFL betting.
Only the New York Jets had an average cover of worse than minus-4 (-4.1), while three teams finished at plus-4 or better, a trio led by the Buffalo Bills. The Bills, en route to an 11-5 ATS record (tied with the Miami Dolphins for the best), covered their 16 games by an average of plus-5.6 points.
Here are the NFL ATS records for each team in 2020.
|Team||ATS Record||ATS +/-|