Breaking Down The Lions’ 2017-2018 Schedule
The Detroit Lions are a little over a month away from their first regular season game. They will play in three primetime games this year. The schedule will feature teams from the NFC south and the AFC north. Overall, there are a lot of tough games on their schedule.
Week 1: The Lions open up against the Arizona Cardinals at Ford Field. The Cardinals come into the season after having somewhat of a down year. They went 7-8-1 after going 13-3 and appearing in the NFC championship game in 2015-2016. This will be a real test to start the season.
Week 2: Detroit goes on the road to play the New York Giants for Monday Night Football on ESPN. Again, another tough game. The Giants beat the Lions at the end of last season in a defensive battle.
Week 3: The Atlanta Falcons come to Detroit to play the Lions. Atlanta nearly won it all last season if it wasn’t for New England’s historic comeback in the Super Bowl. They bring back a very talented team and a high powered offense this season. Look for them to be one of the league’s top teams again this season.
Week 4: Detroit goes to Minnesota for their first divisional game. Both games last season came down to the very end between the two teams. The Lions were able to walk away with two wins over the Vikings.
Week 5: Cam Newton and the Carolina Panthers come to Detroit. Much like Arizona, Carolina had a down year after having a great season in 2015-2016. Carolina went 15-1 that season and ended up losing in the Super Bowl. The Panthers should present a challenge for the Lions.
Week 6: The Lions go back to New Orleans again this season. They convincingly beat the Saints last season, looking great on both sides of the ball. This was Detroit’s only win where they didn’t overcome a deficit.
Week 7: BYE WEEK
Week 8: The Lions host the Pittsburgh Steelers for a Sunday Night Football game on NBC. The Steelers have a ton of talent on their roster. This game could easily turn into a shootout. Pittsburgh made it all the way to the AFC championship game last season. The Lions will have an extra week to prepare for this game.
Week 9: Detroit goes to Lambeau Field to play Green Bay for a Monday night showdown. The Packers have been a thorn in the side for the Lions. Last season, Green Bay took both games from Detroit last season.
Week 10: The Cleveland Browns come to Ford Field to play Detroit. The Browns nearly went 0-16 last season and are rebuilding again this season. This presents a very favorable matchup at home for the Lions.
Week 11: The Lions travel to Soldier Field in Chicago to play the Bears. Chicago was able to win of their three games last season against Detroit at home. While the Bears are in a rebuilding stage, the Lions need to come ready to play in this divisional battle.
Week 12: Detroit hosts Minnesota for the second consecutive season on Thanksgiving. The Lions won this game on a last-second field goal by Matt Prater last season. Detroit has won three consecutive games on Thanksgiving.
Week 13: Joe Flacco and the Baltimore Ravens host the Lions in week 13. Baltimore plays well on their home field, winning six of their eight games there last season. The last time these two teams met, kicker Justin Tucker hit a 61-yard game winning field goal on Monday Night Football against the Lions.
Week 14: Detroit travels to Tampa Bay to play the young and talented Buccaneers. Quarterback Jameis Winston looks to take the next step in development this season and lead Tampa Bay to its first playoff birth since 2008. This game will be a real test for the Lions on the road.
Week 15: The Lions host the Chicago Bears and will be wearing their new color rush jerseys. Last season, quarterback Matthew Stafford forced his way into the endzone for a late touchdown to lead the Lions to a 20-17 win over the Bears. This should be another favorable home game for the Lions.
Week 16: As the home stretch of the season comes to an end, the Lions make a trip to Cincinnati. The Bengals did meet expectations last season after winning the AFC North in 2015-2016. Even with a down season, Cincinnati will be a tough game on the road.
Week 17: The Lions host the Packers on the last week of the season again this season. Last year, Aaron Rodgers and Green Bay stole the show in a game that was moved to Sunday night because of its importance. The Packers won the division by beating the Lions in that game. This could turn out to be a rematch for the division once again.
Prediction: 7-9. There are a lot of toss-up games on Detroit’s schedule this season. Pittsburgh, Atlanta, Carolina, and Arizona will all be tough games at home that could go either way. Traveling to Baltimore, Tampa Bay, and Cincinnati could all result in losses for the Lions. That’s not even taking their division into consideration. Overall, they finish below .500 and end up finishing second in the NFC North.