Okay so we’re in a bye week after eight games. The Lions are 6-2 which is around or a little higher than what we thought they would be going into the season. As we thought, the Packers are probably going to win the division but the Lions currently have a two-game lead in the wild-card. With the Lions being 6-2, what are the expectations for the rest of the year? First, let’s look at the rest of the schedule.
@ Chicago – This game will be pretty important for the rest of the season. If the season ended today, Chicago would be in the playoffs. The Bears could gain a full game on them in the wild-card and in the NFC North. If the Lions lose to the Bears coming off a bye week, it would be a blow. However, the Lions beat them the first time so why shouldn’t they the second?
vs Carolina – The Panthers are only 2-6 but don’t let that fool you. They remind me of last year’s Lions as they have lost many close games so far. They gave the Packers, Bears, Saints, and Vikings all they could handle. This game scares me a little.
vs Green Bay – The Packers are the best team in the NFC North and the NFL right now. I think the Lions have a really good shot at winning this game. It is on Thanksgiving Day in front of the entire country. For the first time in a long time, the Lions are relevant on Thanksgiving Day which makes this game a little more special.
@ New Orleans - This will be tough. The Saints are 5-3 but they are coming off a terrible loss to St. Louis so who knows how good they really are. Anyways, the Superdome is one of the loudest places to play.
vs Minnesota – The Lions beat them the first time in Minnesota so they should win this one. The Lions can’t start they did against the Vikes the first time this year. Christian Ponder is still maturing and the Vikes look like a different team with him under center.
@ Oakland – The Raiders are 4-3 right now. The Lions will have to go to the most hostile environment in all of football. The “Black Hole” will be really up for this game if the Raiders are fighting for a playoff spot. Carson Palmer is now the QB which doesn’t make this game any easier.
vs San Diego – You just don’t know with the Chargers. It seems they always start the season with high expectations but have an average season. They got some weapons and have a pretty good football team. I think the Lions will pull this one out with it being at Ford Field
@ Green Bay – This is another tough game. If the Lions are fighting for their playoff lives, the Packers are going to want them to put them away. The Bears learned the hard way last year as they let Green Bay beat them in the last game and allowed them to go to the playoffs. It ended up biting them back and we all know what ended up happening with the Pack.
I can see and think the Lions should win six of those games. Twelve wins should without a doubt put them into the playoffs for the first time in a long time. If the Lions don’t make the playoffs, you have to consider this season a failure. I don’t know what I should expect from the Lions the rest of the year. If they make the playoffs and lose in the first round, is it a successful season?
Like I said, I’m not sure what I think a reasonable goal is for the Lions this year but I am excited to see what happens.