While the Detroit Lions didn’t win much in 2019, they were the only team to keep Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes out of the end zone.
A fun fact to reflect on after the Super Bowl might give Detroit Lions fans some optimism for next season. Or it won’t, but it is telling of what this defense is capable of. Looking back on the team’s loss against the Kansas City Chiefs in week four, the Honolulu Blue defense was the only unit that prevented quarterback Patrick Mahomes from finding the end zone.
Mahomes is now a Super Bowl MVP and champion after the Chiefs came from behind to beat the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday. And the Lions – yes, those three-win Detroit Lions (!) – were the only team to keep him out of the end zone for an entire 60-minute NFL game.
Okay, that’s an interesting fact, but what does it mean? For starters, it shows that head coach Matt Patricia is employing the Patriot way. The New England Patriots are known for taking away opposing offenses’ strengths. Keeping Mahomes out of the end zone qualifies for that.
But what else does it mean? Maybe nothing. Or, it can show Lions fans how this defense can play when they are healthy. They had some trouble finishing against the Chiefs, and against the Arizona Cardinals before that, but they were tough and active. While many remember the meltdown leading to a three-win season, this little fact is something positive and they have something to build upon.
While Mahomes still put up 315 passing yards and 54 rushing yards in that early-season matchup, the Lions drew a line in the sand and said, “This guy isn’t going to score.” And he didn’t. They’ve earned some respect for that.
Now, we know the Lions didn’t make it close to the playoffs this year, they have some positive things to build on heading into 2020. And the NFL draft is showing some promise with potential defensive stars to add to the Motor City defense. Adding a piece or two might be all it takes to push this team onto the winning side of close matchups.
Until the draft and 2020 season, we won’t know how capable this team can become of winning games. But we do know they can gameplan to take away the strength of a Super Bowl team. And that’s something fun to think about for now.