Detroit Lions continuing curse of insignificant season finales
Once again, the Detroit Lions are closing out the the season with an insignificant home finale.
On Sunday the Detroit Lions will welcome the Green Bay Packers to Ford Field for the regular season finale. It’s an insignificant game for the Packers, who have already clinched the No. 1 seed in the NFC playoffs. Detroit is of course in the NFC North cellar with a 2-13-1 record.
It is also an insignificant game because, win or lose, Detroit has a lock on the No. 2 draft position. But if Jacksonville wins and Detroit loses Sunday, the Lions would get the No. 1 pick in April’s draft.
Detroit has not had a significant win in a season finale since 2017, when the Jim Caldwell-led Lions beat the Packers 35-11. It was also Caldwell’s last game as Detroit’s head coach, which is interesting when you consider he is a candidate for the vacant head coaching job in Jacksonville now.
Detroit Lions playing another insignificant season finale
Lions head coach Dan Campbell’s focus this week is to determine who will be healthy enough to play in Sunday’s game.
-Who will be the starting quarterback? Jared Goff or Tim Boyle?
-Who will be the starting offensive tackles? Taylor Decker and Penei Sewell were put on the reserve/COVID-19 list Monday. Campbell and his staff must plan for the worst-case scenario. We could see Matt Nelson and Will Holden as the starting tackles against the Packers.
While Campbell works on putting a competitive team on the field for Sunday’s finale, Green Bay head coach Matt LaFleur plans on treating it as a typical regular season game.
-Will Aaron Rodgers play the entire game or at some point be relieved by Jordan Love? Rodgers is the best judge of what he can handle, but I think he’ll choose to leave the game after conferring with LaFleur.
-Will we see a lot of Davante Adams, Aaron Jones and AJ Dillon? Probably not. They are critical members of the Packers offense, so they may be restricted in the amount of playing time they receive. Expect Rodgers to spread the ball around to protect his teammates and prepare them for the playoffs.
If Goff, Decker and Sewell play in Sunday’s game, the Lions could finish the season with a victory. If multiple of those guys can’t suit up, the Packers will be in line to win even as they likely play a lot of backups.