The Lions have been talked about a lot this offseason. Unfortunately, the talk surrounding the Lions has mostly been about the off the field issues of Mikel Leshoure, Nick Fairley and Titus Young.
Regardless of the off the field issues, experts are still higher than ever on the Lions’ Super Bowl chances.
During ESPN’s NFC North Preview, ESPN analyst Cris Carter and former Colts Vice Chairman Bill Polian both expect big things to come from the Lions in the future.
Cris Carter had this to say about the future of the Lions:
“I believe Detroit could sneak in and represent the NFC in the Super Bowl. They have that type of young talent on their roster. Might be a year or two away.”
Carter has really come around on the Lions. Last season, he didn’t even think Calvin Johnson was an elite receiver. I think he’s realized just how dangerous this team is.
Bill Polian who is very familiar with success in the NFL (former GM of Bills who went to four straight Super Bowls and Vice Chairman of the Colts who won the Super Bowl in 2008) is also very high on the Lions and believes the only thing holding them back is a dominate running back and immaturity.
“They’re this close, talent-wise, to being a great football team,” Polian said. “They’ve got really everything you need except for the dominant running back. Everything else is in place. But these kinds of distractions are problems, and they’ve got to get it solved.”
Expectations are high inside the Lions organization as well. General Manager Martin Mayhew foresees the Lions winning a Super Bowl in the near future. Mayhew had this to say about the Lions eventually winning the Super Bowl:
“We expect to do that eventually, but we want to keep being there, keep knocking on the door consistently.”
Mayhew believes that the key to winning a Super Bowl is continuity. This season the Lions are returning 21 of 22 starters and their key players are entering the prime of their careers.
It seems the Lions finally have all the pieces in place in place to be contenders in the NFL for the next decade. They have great management, a great head coach, a franchise quarterback with elite talent surrounding him, and an up and coming defense.
With so much optimism surrounding this young Lions team, there has never been a better time to be a Lions fan.