DETROIT – We knew the 2021 Detroit Lions would be a bad team. But did we think they’d go 0-17? With a very tough slate of games left, it’s not impossible.
The Lions are 0-6 to start the 2021 season under a new regime, and while the odds were stacked against them having any sort of a successful winning season, they could be even worse than we thought. But it’s hard to tell.
The Lions have been close to winning, in at least three games (Ravens, Vikings and we’ll throw in the 49ers, to be nice). The defense has been decent for the last few weeks, at times, at least good enough to give the team a chance to win.
It’s been the offense that has sputtered over and over again lately, leaving the defense out to dry and eventually, giving the opposing team plenty of time to figure it out. That’s exactly what happened against the Bengals.
So, how bad are the Lions? We’re not sure. They could surprise a team, perhaps, and steal a win. The remaining schedule is a tough one for the Lions. Entering the season, the Lions had the 6th hardest schedule, which seems cruel. Now, the Lions have the fourth hardest remaining schedule.
- Oct. 24 @ LA Rams: Matthew Stafford is surely going to pummel his old team into the ground, one would think. The Rams have already opened as 15 (!!!) point favorites, which is absurdly high for an NFL game.
- Oct. 31 vs. Philadelphia Eagles: Are the Eagles beatable? Yes. They’re 2-4, but somehow, they have played better on the road. Perfect! Still, this could be a shot at a win, on Halloween!
- Nov. 14 @ Pittsburgh Steelers: The 3-3 Steelers have played some inconsistent games this season, but they’re still the Steelers -- they always play well at home and it’s tough to see the Lions snagging a win in the Rust Belt.
- Nov. 21 @ Cleveland Browns: In the past, a visit to Cleveland would offer a great shot at a win. Nowadays, it’s not so easy. Cleveland isn’t a Super Bowl contender, but they’re no longer a joke. The top-10 Browns defense should give the Lions lackluster offense plenty of trouble. But hey, maybe the old Browns will show up.
- Nov. 25 vs. Chicago Bears: Thanksgiving always seems to give the Lions, no matter how bad they are, a little extra juice. At least in the first half. The Bears are improving under rookie QB Justin Fields, but this should be a winnable game for the Lions, at home, on our holiday, on national TV. Would I bet on it? Absolutely not.
- Dec. 5 vs. Minnesota Vikings: The first matchup was close, and Minnesota (3-3) is not very good this year, so this could be a game the Lions could potentially come away with. But divisional matchups are always tough.
- Dec. 12 @ Denver Broncos: It’s never easy to play on the road at Mile High, but Denver could be a road game to steal for the Lions. The Broncos haven’t beaten a good team this year, with all three of its wins against the league’s bottom. They’ve been handedly beaten by the three winning teams they faced.
- Dec. 19 vs. Arizona Cardinals: The undefeated Cardinals should win this one easily, I won’t offer any hope for this. Kyler Murray should have about four touchdowns in this game.
- Dec. 26 @ Atlanta Falcons: This could be the best chance at a win for the Lions, facing the lowly Falcons, at the bottom of the NFC South. The Lions should be able to put up a decent battle in Georgia.
- Jan. 2 @ Seattle Seahawks: On the road in Seattle, I wouldn’t give the Lions much of a chance here, especially this late in the season where Seattle will likely have plenty to play for in the stacked NFC West.
- Jan. 9 vs. Green Bay Packers: The Lions only hope here is the Packers not having a thing to play for, having wrapped up the division, and resting Aaron Rodgers for the week. But that’s wishful thinking.
So, in conclusion, the Lions best chances at winning are against the Eagles, Bears, Vikings, Broncos or Falcons. Come on, they have to win one or two of those, right? Right?!