The Detroit Lions were expected to do much more damage than they’ve done so far on the field in 2020, and as the season pushes through the second half, the team could soon be in even more desperate position.
Recently, NFL.com analyst Cynthia Frelund took a closer look at recalibrating projections for every team in the NFL down the stretch. When it came to the Lions, the news was particularly grim. Frelund wasn’t exactly positive about Detroit’s chances of finishing 2020 in elite fashion.
As a whole, she projected Detroit to only add 3.8 wins to their already meager 3 win total. That gives the Lions a chance of finishing around 6-10 or 7-9. Those marks would be pretty bad for the staff, and would certainly leave Detroit on the outside looking in for the playoffs right now given the NFC race.
“The Lions must make their move in the next four weeks (vs. Washington, at Carolina, vs. Houston, at Chicago), because it’s a gauntlet over the final four weeks of the season (vs. Green Bay, at Tennessee, vs. Tampa Bay, vs. Minnesota). With the most rushing touchdowns allowed (13) and the fewest quarterback hits (32), Detroit is struggling against the run and pass.”
Knowing this, the pressure is on Detroit in a huge way to deliver some better results starting now. The schedule gets hard in December, and for Detroit to have a chance, they will need to deliver positive results in November to set themselves up to have a chance.
As it stands now, Frelund doesn’t exactly see it playing out that way in Detroit, which means all bets could be off with what happens after that point.
Critical Lions Stretch Ahead
Frelund is right in saying the Lions have to make a run starting right now. The next 3 weeks will be vital for them moving forward considering they play the likes of Washington, Carolina and Houston. Any of those teams could be a win, but they could also beat Detroit as well which would be bad news for the team and their hopes. Basically, if the Lions don’t win these next few weeks, they could have a horrible mark in 2020 with which to finish off their year.
Lions Standing Within 2020 NFC Playoff Race
The Lions now are set to play teams with worse records in the next 3 weeks. The best team they could play in the month lies outside that stretch in the form of the Bears, and they have shown some definite vulnerabilities lately. Theoretically, the Lions should be favored in at least a couple more of those upcoming games moving forward.
Even with some of the team’s recent uninspiring defeats on the field, the Lions remain on the periphery of the NFC race for the postseason. They will be battling the likes of the Eagles, Giants, Cardinals, 49ers, Rams, Panthers, Buccaneers and naturally the Bears and Packers for the playoff push in the second half. A win Sunday could have been huge for Detroit to climb back into the thick of things, but the team will have to come through it to stay in the hunt.
If the Lions are not able to make a run, it might only complicate things for their staff and front office. If Frelund’s projected uninspiring finish plays out, the Lions could be in jeopardy of seeing big changes this offseason.