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Could Lions Still Make the Play-offs?

Six games into the season and the Lions have won only one game. It should be easy to assume they have no chance to make the play-offs. Even if they were not mathematically out of it, any Lions fan can tell you they are still out of it. As crazy as it may seem, the Detroit Lions chances of making the play-offs may be better than you know.

First look at the losses the Lions took. In five losses, only once have they lost decisively. The other four losses could easily have gone differently with better play calling, better officiating or simply better play. In those four losses (not including in Minnesota), the Lions have lost by a total of 18 points. That is only an average of 4.5 points a game.

Then you take another closer look at the Lions losses so far this year. By all definitions of the written rules, the Lions actually beat the Bears and that was after Matthew Stafford went down with in injury in the first half. With a back-up, who had not been practicing with the first unit playing half the game, the Lions still should have had a win. Just before the bye-week, the Lions lost to the New York Giants by only 8 points. That came after Shaun Hill went down and they were playing with not only their back-up quarterback, but using Drew Stanton, their third string quarterback. Yet the Lions made it a fairly close game. In another game, the Lions had to play without Nate Burleson as well, allowing the opposing defense to concentrate more on Calvin Johnson.

Even though the Lions have a 1-5 record, they have played much better than that record accounts for while using their second and third string quarterbacks. Not to mention that their rookie running back, Jahvid Best has been playing with two injured toes. Imagine if Best and Stafford were both healthy. With the bye-week rest, both of those players are supposed to come back healthy, giving the Lions offense their healthiest unit since the start of the first game.

So with the bye-week past, the Lions will be much healthier and can be expected to play at a higher level than they have while losing close games to some good teams like the Giants, Eagles and Packers. So it is feasible to believe the Lions could actually start winning now right? Now consider this. The Lions are only 2.5 games behind 1st place in their division.

In a weak NFC North division, the Lions will have rematches with all three of their rivals and this time all three will be in Detroit. Seven of their last ten games will be home games.

Do you really believe the Bears are as good as their record shows? Though the record doesn't show it, the Lions beat the Bears, who have lost three of their last four games. Is it not feasible to think the Lions could make up 2.5 games on the Bears? Especially considering that they will play them at home yet.

What about the Vikings? Yes the Vikings handily beat the Lions, but more than anything that week, the Lions destroyed themselves. Brett Favre has not been very good this year, and their best receiver, Sidney Rice is injured. With Minnesota only one game up on the Lions, and knowing they play each other in Detroit, is it not feasible to see the Lions overcoming that one game deficit?

As things stand, the greatest obstacle for the Lions to overcome would be the Green Bay Packers. Yet just how good are the Packers really? With a healthy team, they won a close game against the Eagles team that the Lions almost beat with a back-up quarterback. The Packers also did not have to face Michael Vick like the Lions had to. The Packers lost to the Bears one week after the Lions had a victory stolen by the refs against them. Make no mistakes about it, the Packers are a good team. They are easily the best team in the division. But it can be argued that with a healthy team, the Lions could catch them.

Don't get me wrong. I am not calling for a play-off birth. I am not saying I believe the Lions will make it to the play-offs much less win a game there. Personally I still maintain they are too young and will make crucial mistakes at critical times. What I am saying however, is that it is not out of the realm of possible for the Lions to make the play-offs. Even with a 1-5 record, there is still reason to believe that the Detroit Lions season is not over.

And that gives the fans a big reason to continue to watch with hope.



  2. I can understand why you would keep your name anonymous when making a statement this big. lol

    The Lions are a much improved team and I believe on the verge of being a good team. I see them as the 2nd best team in our division. The Superbowl may be a year or two away yet though. lol

  3. iam a oakland raiders fan and we have been thru alot and i see the lions makeing good oves to inprove there team good luck lions