ESPN Pundits Unanimously Predict Miserable Week 1 Result for Lions

Tim Boyle

Getty Tim Boyle looks on dejected during the Lions' 2021 preseason finale loss to the Colts.

The Detroit Lions aren’t favored to make much noise during the 2021 season, and anybody wondering if the media still believes that need only take a look at some of the Week 1 projections for the team.

As the Lions get set to take on the San Francisco 49ers, it’s clear the team is nobody’s favorites. That much was proven true by ESPN once again. In the site’s Week 1 pick piece, not a single NFL contributor selected Detroit to upend San Francisco in the season opener.

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From Emmanuel Acho to Damien Woody with veteran contributors and writers like Mike Clay, Kevin Seifert and Seth Wickersham in between, nobody was feeling good enough to pick Detroit to win the game. It was just one of four other unanimous picks for Week 1 from the crew of nine prognosticators that make their picks on a weekly basis. Additionally, all the contributors felt as if the Carolina Panthers, Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Baltimore Ravens would all take home victories for the week.

As nice as it is to be a unanimous pick, it does add a bit of pressure to the road team. The 49ers are seen as easy favorites in the game, but the Lions will be able to play with passion behind an excitable home crowd in order to try and pull the upset.

At this point, it’s an upset many people don’t see playing out whatsoever.

Lions Predicted for Dismal 2021 Season

Not only are the Lions not favored this week, but they aren’t favored to do much damage all year long. It’s easier to find projections which have the team near the bottom of the league and near the top of the projected 2022 mock drafts rather than near the top of the NFC or anywhere near the top of the NFC North. Many folks believe the Lions are heading for just a two or three win season at best in 2021, as they rebuild under a new coach and a new front office with a new roster.

Last season, the Lions were a miserable 5-11 which led to all the sweeping changes. Detroit has gone 0-16 before in 2008, so they will be hoping to avoid that fate. In the future, the believe is the Lions can get bak on the right track with Dan Campbell and Brad Holmes calling the shots, even as many don’t think it will happen fast.

Lions vs. 49ers Week 1 Primer

The Lions start off their 2021 campaign at home against the 49ers looking to improve on last season’s dismal 5-11 finish. Interestingly enough, San Francisco finished the 2020 season in bad form as well going 6-10. To this end, it’s going to be a chance at redemption for both rosters as they get set to attack a new season on the field. Detroit has seen some major changes with Jared Goff taking over as quarterback, a changed wideout room as well as a brand new defensive approach under Aaron Glenn. Seeing how the defensive line fares as well as a young secondary will be key right off the bat. Whether the Lions get Jimmy Garoppolo or Trey Lance will be interesting to monitor as well, as it could change the game plan a bit for Dan Campbell’s team.

Regardless, one of the more interesting variables in this game revolves around the road crowd. If the Detroit fans are revved-up like Campbell wants, it could make life difficult on the 49ers, and pave the potential path toward an unlikely Week 1 upset on the field.

That is obviously not something the national media would agree with.

READ NEXT: Revised Game, Record Prediction for Lions’ 2021 Season

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