Detroit Lions: Harsh reality check about expectations for 2020

Detroit Lions (Photo by Rey Del Rio/Getty Images)
Detroit Lions (Photo by Rey Del Rio/Getty Images) /
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Kenny Golladay, Detroit Lions
Kenny Golladay, Detroit Lions (Photo by Dustin Bradford/Getty Images) /

Why national football writers are expecting another long season for the Detroit Lions, and why there’s still reason to dream big anyway.

For fans hoping to watch the Detroit Lions pull a worst-to-first turnaround in 2020 like last year’s San Francisco 49ers, just know that the bandwagon at the start of the season will be pretty empty.

With the three major phases of the NFL offseason (free agency, trades, draft) more or less complete, the analysts have begun to put together their grades and comparisons of where each team stands. With hints of the new season slowly approaching along the horizon, the Lions still remain very much hidden.

Most oddsmakers have pegged the over/under for Lions wins in the 2020 season at 6.5 (which I swear has been the default Vegas prediction for them for like ten years in a row). Once the national outlets begin putting together their preseason projections, it’s very likely that the consensus will be either third or last place in the NFC North once again.

I don’t say any of this to get down on the Lions or try to stop anyone from getting excited about what’s in store for the team, but the reality is that the national perception around the league is not strong at all. The current team is ranked near the very bottom in overall talent, and also near the bottom in terms of offseason acquisitions.

In this post, I’m going to address two of the more popular recent NFL analysis pieces circulating, neither of which has much positive to say in terms of expectations for a successful year in Honolulu Blue. I also include a counterpoint to each argument, with reason to suggest that contrary to these preseason lists, the Lions do indeed have plenty of reason to dream big heading into this season.