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Detroit Has Lions Share of Hope

Many fans will look at the last two losses to the Packers and Saints as evidence the Lions are not ready to be an elite team. Many will say the Lions are too young and undisciplined. I see Superbowl possibilities.

The Lions went into halftime against the Packers down 7-0 before falling apart with stupid penalties. They looked strong against the Saints before that same stupidity came into play at a much higher level. It is the old bit about the glass being half empty or half full all over again.

On one hand, you can look at the stupid penalties and say they just are not mature enough to beat the premier teams right now. You can look at losses to the Falcons and Bears and believe they haven't shown they can hang with a good team much less a great team. If this is the way you see things, then you see the glass half empty.

Then there is the other hand and in this hand we hold a glass that is half full. Without Suh, Delmas or Houston, the Lions played a fairly strong game against the New Orleans Saints. Take away the one touchdown and all of something like 15 yards in that drive from the Packers and the Lions controlled that game in the first half.

Here is how I see the Detroit Lions right now. They have the talent to match up against any team in the NFL. With the team healthy, Linehan calling plays well, and with their heads on straight, they can beat any team they are against. There in lies the problem though. Too often they are not playing with their heads on straight. Too often Linehan does not call a good game plan. So how can you have much hope?

The Lions play a bad Minnesota Vikings team this weekend. Even without Suh, the Lions should be able to beat the Vikings. Then they go to Oakland and play the Raiders, and though that one could be tough, it is winnable. Then the Lions come back home and play the Chargers. Again, that one might be tough, but the Chargers are definitely not as strong as they have been in the past. The regular season will end with the Lions on the road facing the Packers in Green Bay.

If the Lions win three of those games, they should make the play-offs. With Stafford getting healthy again and Suh over the suspension, winning three of the last four is not out of the question. Even if the Lions end at 9-7 by winning only two of the last four games, they still have a chance to make the playoffs. Right now I would place the Lions odds of making the play-offs at about 50-50. So for the fun of it, let us pretend the Lions make the play-offs.

Here is the simple fact. Whether you like the Lions players or not. Whether you like the coaches or not. Whether you think they are too immature or dirty or not! The Lions have a team that can give any team fits on the field. Once they get to the play-offs, there is nothing saying they are not good enough to win. Yes they will need to play level headed. Yes they will need to be healthy. Yes the coaches will have to do their jobs well. But if they all do that, they can beat anyone! Would the Lions be favored to win? Not a chance, and I would say not to bet the farm on them either. But they have the talent to win and if the coaches put them in position to succeed, they can win!

Right now the odds on favorite in the NFC to make the Superbowl is either the Packers or Saints. But if there is a team in the NFL that is primed to be the surprise to upset those two powerhouses, it is the Detroit Lions. Likely they will not, I will admit that much. But there is definitely reason to have hope, for the realm of possibility is not so far fetched with the Lions.

But first things first. First the Lions have to win enough of the last four games to make the play-offs. Right now I think they will. Call me a "Glass is half full" kind of guy.


  1. The Lions are a year or two away from being an elite team and that's only if they fill some of the holes they have. They are not as close as you think. There is no doubt they are a lot better than they were a few seasons ago. However having talent does not aways mean you win. In my opinion they have the wrong guy leading this very good team.

  2. AJ, I absolutely agree they have the wrong guy leading the team, but I am not so sure if they are a couple seasons away yet. Every team has its holes. Even the Packers are not perfect. Talent wise, this team has what it takes. They need a better coach and OC to be elite. Yet even these coaches can have their good days and on those days with this talent, they can beat any team.

    I dont believe they WILL win the Superbowl if they make the play-offs, but once they are in the play-offs, if these coaches can put it together for a few weeks, they are very capable of winning.

    Will they win the Superbowl? Very likely not! CAN they win it? Absolutely. I am just saying that once they are in the Play-offs, anything can happen with this team.

  3. I see your point Ken, however you see the cup as being half full I see it a little more as half empty. Coaching is a huge problem for the Lions and sometimes that very hard to overcome. This team has taken on the personalty of it's coach, ready to fight at every turn. Your right every team has holes even Green Bay but not at the top where leadership is needed. I love what the lions have going, however without great leadership the holes will get nothing but larger.