So here we are THE Detroit Lions are sitting in the playoff picture. Of course they can make the playoffs this year and that was not my benchmark. A winning season was all I asked for. So here comes Oakland a team thats really kind of hard to gauge right now but talk is Darren Macfadden might be ready to go for sunday. If I am the Raiders I will let DMC tote the rocks all day. Because frankly I don't think the Lions can stop him as much as it pains me to admit it. Even if the Lions play at the full potential they have been bad against the run all season. I love Gun but this Defense needs to be tweaked not overhauled but theres no reason for this defense to be so bad against the rushing attack.
After Oakland we get the San Deigo Chargers a true trap game. This team is down and Rivers is off but everyone knows what they can do between the lines when they are on there game. Again Tolbert and Matthews both good backs with the abillity to expose weaknesses in run defense. IF you can stop the run I have no doubt Stafford could go throw for throw against Rivers. The problem lies with the fact that both Oakland and Chargers have the abillity to keep our explosive offense off the field.
Next up will be out season finale in the legendary Lambeu field on January the 1st of 2012. New year but same team. Suprisingly we might have a shot right now. Greg Jennings is out and the Packers are not much of a run team. It's gonna be a pass for pass matchup vs Stafford and Rodgers in freezing weather. Lions vaunted D line vs the Packers ball hawking secondary. Turnovers or lack there of is key to this game. The Lions secondary will have to be healthy and we will have to bring some of the Giants game plan into Green Bay with us.
Can the Lions make the playoffs. Of course outside of Green Bay the previous 2 games are winnable but tough. What will they do in the playoffs. The reality is porbably not much. When January ball hits your weaknesses with be torn apart by the best teams. We can't run in the cold or to keep the great QBs off the field and manage the clock. We can't stop the run to get our explosive passing attack back on the field and keep time on the clock when needed. The Lions have a great young nucleus of players and a fantastic coaching staff. These last 3 weeks is time for a fan reality check. This team is good and has alot of talent. They need time to mature and become a MUCH more disciplined team. Fact is no matter what happens from here on out we are on the right path. The Detroit Lions are far from there yet. Soon but making the playoffs for the Lions should be seen as a learning experince for Matthew and the boys. NOT as a team destined to win it all dispite all circumstances. Not that the team can do damage in the playoffs many things can happen in 3 weeks. What I am seeing right now between the flags and mistakes. That is not a playoff team.
I guess my point is don't get carried away with post season asperations. This team is not superbowl or bust, making the post season is just another step to the Lions development.