The Detroit Lions will attempt to extend their winning streak at home, facing the 4-2 Colts
The Detroit Lions took care of business in the Mercedes-Benz Stadium last Sunday as they beat the Atlanta Falcons, 23-22, in an electric come-from-behind victory. So, what’s next?
The Lions sit at 3-3 and are .500 for the first time in the 2020 regular season, which is remarkable as many fans gave up on them after Week Two. After Sunday, many fans on social media have bought back into the season and are ready to see what this team can do. Let’s hope they don’t disappoint.
Looking into this week’s matchup, the Indianapolis Colts (4-2) are coming off a bye and will travel a short distance to Ford Field to take on the Lions. Essentially, Detroit needs to be flawless on offense to win this game.
The Colts’ defense is no joke, just like the Jacksonville Jaguars and Atlanta Falcons who the Lions recently played. Indy currently ranks second in the league in team total defense. While their defense is stout, the offense currently ranks 19th and has been very average thus far with quarterback Philip Rivers at the helm.
Now let’s dive into the top three things the Lions need to do to beat the Colts this weekend. Yes, it’s all very simple, but it needs to be executed at a high level if the Lions want to come out on top.
1. No Turnovers
First things first, no turnovers. As previously stated, the offense needs to be flawless against this tough defense. This means no turnovers.
Look what happened last week when the offense didn’t turn the ball over? A nice W! Just stick to the game plan and try not to get fancy.
It’s the same story each week, establish the run early and utilize play action to open up the big plays downfield to wide receiver Kenny Golladay running his infamous go route. This will allow for no forced throws by quarterback Matthew Stafford and as long as everyone protects the football, they should be set up for success.
2. Protect Matthew Stafford
Stafford is so experienced that he can pick this defense apart and will be able to sling it to any of his playmakers out on the field when they’re open. He will just need time to get the ball out of his hand to let the play develop.
The offensive line will need to improve their protection this week as they allowed two sacks and six quarterback hits last week. Protect #9!
3. Pressure the Quarterback
A good friend of mine once referred to Rivers this season as a statue as he is very immobile and cannot move around in the pocket. Although newly acquired defensive end Everson Griffen will not be available to play this week due to COVID-19 protocols it is just what the doctor ordered for this defense to keep them inspired.
It might be easier said than done for the Detroit Lions, but pressure Philip Rivers and he will get sacked, force throws leading to interceptions, fumble, and/or make more ill-advised decisions. Rivers is notorious for throwing interceptions as last year he ranked third in the league behind former Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ passer Jameis Winston and Cleveland Browns quarterack, Baker Mayfield.