The Detroit Lions figure to play overseas this coming season, and before the NFL schedule gets revealed next month, there’s some hints dropping as it relates to where they might play when all is said and done.
As has been revealed, the Arizona Cardinals aren’t going to be a team the Lions play in Mexico City. Josh Weinfuss of ESPN revealed that the Lions were off the list in terms of teams that were likely to play the Cardinals in Mexico, with multiple other teams remaining on that list.
The Lions are likely to play internationally in 2020, but with this news, aren’t expected to see the Cardinals in the game. With that team out of the picture, however, there is one team that could make sense in the mix and it’s now the Jacksonville Jaguars.
Lions More Likely Facing Jaguars in London
A few weeks back, it was revealed that the Jacksonville Jaguars would be hosting a pair of home games in London next year. That revelation normally wouldn’t mean much for Detroit fans, minus the fact that the Lions are set to play the Jaguars on the road in 2020, and have already been rumored to be in the mix for an international game in 2020.
After the announcement was made, Lions beat writers began speculating that the teams could be set for a collision course over the pond next year.
The logic? The Lions haven’t played an international game since 2015, and the league could want to get them back there this season. That’s been rumored for a while, with the only difference being their potential competition.
Rumors Persisted About Lions vs. Falcons Abroad
According to a report, the Atlanta Falcons are likely to play an international game in October. That left MLive.com’s Kyle Meinke to speculate that the Lions could be the team that ends up joining them when all is said and done. This is due to the fact that the team hasn’t played internationally in over a handful of years.
Meinke called the chances “pretty good” that this game gets moved overseas for next season, rather than taking place in Atlanta.
Ironically, Detroit and Atlanta squared off in 2014 in London, with the Lions pulling out an exciting 22-21 victory in the last seconds courtesy of a Matt Prater field goal. Detroit played the Kansas City Chiefs in London the very next year in 2015, losing 45-10. Since then, the Lions have not gone overseas.
News of this potential pairing seemed to take a hit with reports that the Falcons would tangle with the Broncos in London, so it’s more than possible the Lions will get the Jaguars with that in mind.
Lions Opponents for 2020 Finalized
When it comes to what teams the Lions will play next season, things have finally seen a measure of finality. Detroit finished last 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 full schedule reveal including time, dates and locations will come later on in April.
Lions 2020 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.
If they have to travel internationally, it will be a good experience no matter how tough it might be to prepare for the staff. Cross Mexico off the list of locations, however.