The Detroit Lions will battle the Bears in their opener. Will they prove they are for real or fall flat on their face?
The Detroit Lions will finally take the field and actually play a game. And it will actually count in the standings. So it’s actually kind of important.
Yes, the Lions will face the Bears with an opportunity to impress their fans and prove they belong in the divisional chase. While Detroit certainly has their flaws and will be hindered by some injuries, they still have no excuse not to defend Ford Field and start off the season with a victory.
In all honesty, the Lions couldn’t ask for a better match up to play their first game since last season’s finale against the Green Bay Packers. The Bears defense will be a test, especially given Detroit’s injuries to Halapoulivaati Vaitai and Kenny Golladay.
But good teams overcome injuries while bad teams are sunk by them. Matthew Stafford will still line up at quarterback and he still has weapons to work with both on the ground and in the air. The expectation to win won’t change.
So despite playing in an empty Ford Field in front of virtual fans, the Lions have to do what good teams do; take care of business. Don’t make excuses and drop the ball. Play like you belong in the postseason race.
The offensive line will experience some duress from these Chicago defenders, but this isn’t the ’85 Bears defense. This is a team that is still going to be pretty good on defense, but the Lions offense is better.
Will the Lions pile up the points? Maybe not given this is their first live-action and usually the defense is ahead of the offense early in the season. However, if Matthew Stafford plays anything like he did last year, the Lions will score enough points to win the game.
But the real question isn’t the offense. The real question is; can the Lions defense keep the Bears offense from looking like contenders when they’re nothing more than pretenders?