It’s not off to a great start, but here’s what Detroit Lions should be rooting for the rest of Week 14.
The 5-7 Detroit Lions are in contention for a playoff spot, with wins and some help needed to stay that way. Week 14 has some important games in that respect, beyond of course the Lions getting a win over the Minnesota Vikings on Sunday.
Be it about playoff contention or draft positioning, Week 14 is not off to a great start for the Lions after Baker Mayfield led the Los Angeles Rams to a comeback win over the Las Vegas Raiders 48 hours after becoming a member of the team. The Lions of course have the Rams’ first-round pick again in April from the Matthew Stafford trade, so the Rams have no direct incentive to lose since they won’t have what’s lined up to be a high pick. Every win they have impacts where the Lions will make that pick.
Shifting to Sunday’s action, here are the most pertinent other games for Lions fans to keep an eye on and the result to root for.
Detroit Lions’ fans rooting guide for Week 14
Philadelphia Eagles at New York Giants, 1 p.m. ET
The Giants currently have a 2.5-game lead on the Lions, with a 7-4-1 record. The Lions also beat the Giants back in Week 11, but their tie with the Commanders in Week 13 wasn’t an ideal result.
What Lions should root for: Probably obvious, but an Eagles win as the Giants begin a fairly tough closing stretch of the season.
Carolina Panthers at Seattle Seahawks, 4:25 p.m.ET
The 7-5 Seahawks beat the Lions in Week 4, so they hold that possible tiebreaker in their pocket. The 4-8 Panthers are also in the mix for a top 5 to top-10 draft pick, with a head-to-head loss to the Rams to help them if the two are tied.
What Lions fans should root for: A Panthers win on the road, to put them at 5-8 and drop the Seahawks to 7-6.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers at San Francisco 49ers, 4:25 p.m. ET
This matchup of division leaders carries interest for the Lions. The 49ers (8-4) have a one-game lead over the Seahawks, while 6-6 Tampa Bay is leading the very bad NFC South.
The NFC South will not produce a Wild Card team, so it comes down to where the 49ers land as they move forward with rookie Brock Purdy under center. San Francisco play Seattle then 7-5-1 Washington after this game, so what they do will have a big say in the NFC playoff race.
A Buccaneers’ win is most helpful here for the Lions.
What Lions fans should root for: A Buccaneers win