At 6-2, the Detroit Lions have looked like one of the best teams in the NFC even as they haven't always been at their peak.
ESPN's Eric Woodyard recently took a look at the Lions at the midpoint of the season. In the "what we don't know yet" column, Woodyard pointed to what has be proven by this team.
"(Dan) Campbell acknowledged during Monday's practice the Lions "have not played our best football collectively." Five of Detroit's six victories have come against teams with losing records that are 15-27 collectively, so there are still questions surrounding just how legitimate the Lions are. The Lions haven't reached the playoffs since 2016 and are 1-2 this season against likely playoff teams with their lone win coming in the opener against the Chiefs."
It's fair to want to see the Lions get tested, or beat a really good team, before buying into them as a legit top tier team.
Detroit Lions' schedule might not allow for big tests down the stretch
Will the Lions get a shot to prove they are "real" by beating multiple good teams? Their upcoming schedule might not provide them many opportunities to do so.
Over the next five weeks, the Lions will play one team who is currently above .500 (New Orleans Saints-Week 13). That game will be on the road, so it could be an intriguing measuring stick if the Saints keep winning.
The Dallas Cowboys on the road in Week 17 stands as the toughest test on the Lions' remaining schedule. Outside of that, the 5-4 Minnesota Vikings (albeit without Kirk Cousins) could be a test for the twice in the final three weeks.
All the Lions can do is continue to play the schedule in front of them, and handle their business. If they're able to do that, it's likely few people should be concerned with how "real they might look in the process.