3 moves the Detroit Lions must make to reach Super Bowl LIX

After falling agonizingly short of it this year, here are three offseason moves the Detroit Lions must make if they want to make it to the Super Bowl next year.
2 of 4

3. Find a kicker who is a legitimate option from longer distance

As much as Campbell will always be aggressive on fourth down in certain areas of the field, foregoing two field goal attempts in the second half of the NFC Championship Game exposed something that was had not been a big deal. Until it was a big deal.

Under Campbell and Holmes, the Lions have cycled through kickers regularly, and arguably too much. Last offseason re-signing Michael Badgley after he had stabilized the situation in 2022 was fine, but begged for an upgrade. Later in the summer they re-acquired Riley Patterson, and he won the job in camp. Badgley was eventually brought back on the practice squad after two other teams had brought him in and let him go.

A downward trend from Patterson opened the door for Badgley to take the job late in the season. He was fine, but his track record on longer-distance field goals outdoors is bad.

In the case of the NFC title game, 46 and 48-yard field goals are not chip-shots for even the best kickers. And Badgley is not among the best kickers in the league. That comes off harsh, but it's true.

Even if he had a kicker he was confident in from more than 40 yards out, outdoors in a big game, Campbell may have gone for it both of those second half fourth downs in the NFC Championship Game. But it would be nice if he had the legitimate option to even consider trying a field goal, with a kicker who has even a coin-flip shot to make the kind of kick either of those would have been.