The Detroit Lions finished amongst the NFL’s worst teams in 2019, but as the Kansas City Chiefs proved, turnarounds can come fast in the league, even when nobody else sees them coming.
In this vein, with the Super Bowl now complete, it’s time to think about the odds for next season. As it stands for the Lions, thing’s aren’t that rosy in terms of their own odds to be like Kansas City and end a huge Lombardi Trophy drought.
As a piece by ESPN showed, as expected, the Lions are nobody’s favorites to win the Super Bowl in 2021. In fact, they have the second worst odds in the NFL to do so at 100-1 according to Caesar’s Sportsbook. That is tied with the likes of the Dolphins, Giants and Panthers. The only teams lower? The Redskins and Bengals at 200-1. In other words, don’t plan a parade for Detroit next February.
It might not be wise to place a bet if you’re a Lions fan, but if you do, the payoff could be immense if the team finds a way to get the job done and make history next season.
As always, that remains a massive “if.”
Lions 2020 Schedule
Detroit sustained a last place finish in the NFC North, and as a result they will play a last place schedule. The Lions will also play the AFC South and NFC South next season, in addition to their battles against every team in their division both home and away.
Here’s a look at what is known about their schedule at this point in time in terms of the teams they will play and some of the locations courtesy of FBSchedules.com
Home/away Green Bay Packers
Home/away Chicago Bears
Home/away Minnesota Vikings
@ Jacksonville Jaguars
@ Tennessee Titans
vs. Houston Texans
vs. Indianapolis Colts
@ Carolina Panthers
@ Atlanta Falcons
vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
vs. New Orleans Saints
vs. Washington Redskins
@ Arizona Cardinals
The only piece of information left to sort out was which NFC East team the Lions would play. That was up in the air until the New York Giants beat the Washington Redskins late in the season, ensuring the Redskins would finish in last place. That finishes off the Detroit schedule for next year.
Naturally, the dates and times for these games is not known, and that will not be revealed until April and the new league year. By that time, there should be a better idea of who the Lions will play at what times, and on what networks.
Lions 2020 Playoff Hopes
Detroit started the 2019 season in decent enough shape at 2-0-1, but things took a turn after that point. Injuries piled up across the roster, and Detroit lost quarterback Matthew Stafford for an elongated amount of time to a back injury. The Lions never hit their stride and lost plenty of close games through the middle of the season as their roster got worse and worse hit with the injury bug.
The struggles of the team to stay healthy certainly does little to excuse the inconsistent play of the team’s defense. Offensively, the Lions looked to be heading for a solid season under Darrell Bevell until the bottom fell out. The defense was a wreck from start to finish, however, and that could be the side of the ball that needs the most turnover if the Lions are to be contenders.
Another big question was who will be coaching the Lions in 2020. While many questioned whether Matt Patricia would come back or not, the team revealed his return, meaning it will be Patricia leading his team into these games in 2020.
Lions Schedule Difficulty
The Lions have been no stranger to playing a last place schedule lately. Just this season it happened for the team after they went 6-10 in 2018. Prior to that, the Lions had played a much better schedule given their higher finish from 2017, but were not able to capitalize. Detroit has found life just as difficult with an easier schedule, and will once again have that to deal with in 2020.