...And count the blessings the Lions have had so far. This season, while not perfect, has been a dream come true for the Lions thus far, and they are looking at winning the NFC North (knocking on wood) for the first time ever. This could not have happened without many things going right for the Lions, some having to do with luck, others with skill. Lets start with the skill category. Even though Corey Hilliard and Jason Fox both went down with injuries, undrafted free agent rookie monster LaAdrian Waddle (I love that name) has stepped up big. This 6ft 6, 330 pound monster has been fantastic considering his draft status and the fact that he is working along side another rookie. Waddle has seemed to take over the starting role on the right side, which gives us an outstanding value. That rookie working next to Waddle has also been fantastic. Larry Warford has provided an immense upgrade to the position, even though he is prone to some rookie mistakes. I could go on to mention the entire offensive line, but I think we all know Dom has stepped up, as well as Riley. The offensive line project has been a success so far. Next up is Big Joe Fauria, another monster of a man and another undrafted free agent rookie. I personally wrote an Fanpost a while back about how under used and under appreciated Tony Scheffler was. The reason I bring this up, is in said Fanpost I bashed Fauria, claiming he wouldn't be a good option as a replacement to Tony, and boy was I wrong. While his production is mostly limited to the goal line, Joe has shown great hands and gives Stafford an alternative to Megaton for goal line fades. Reggie Bush has delivered a running game with the help of Joique Bell, finally completing the offense. The speed element that had long been lacking in Detroit, along with the slippery pounding style of Joique has been fantastic. Moving to the defensive side, many people fretted about Ezekiel Ansah. However, he has, in my opinion, been solid with 3.5 sacks along with 2 forced fumbles despite missing a game or two. Many people may see the 3.5 sacks and see a lack of effectiveness; however, Ziggy has help contribute to over 110 quarterback hurries. While getting the sack is nice, so is forcing a bad throw into traffic or out of bounds, and Ziggy has done just that. Perhaps one of the biggest surprises on this Lions team (and that's saying a lot this year) is Rashean Mathis, a late addition to the squad. Mathis has been borderline outstanding most games, and doesn't make many mistakes. With Chris Houston struggling, Mathis has helped pick up the slack. And I would be reminisce but to give a giant thank you to Sam Martin. Good God what a difference a real NFL punter makes. No longer do we suffer through random names shuffled around through out the year. A joyous farewell to Nick Harris, who should not be playing football in America or Canada. 50+ yard punts have made all the difference in close games, and here's to hoping Sam will play in Detroit for a long, long time. Concerning the luck Detroit has had, I think we have some obvious choices. While celebrating any injury does not belong in the NFL, celebrating the losing that follows is just fine. Rodgers and Cutler's respective injuries have dealt the Lions a fantastic hand. Green Bay has shown to be just a below average team without Rodgers and Cobb out due to injury. Meanwhile, the age is starting to catch up to Chicago. Their defense is having trouble just keeping up, while their offense is having troubles without Cutler. Finally, the Lions have the easiest schedule from now until the end of the season, playing many sub-par teams. There should only be one real test if Rodgers is unable to play on Thanksgiving, in the red hot New York Giants. This year seems to be the year to make up for all the heartache of the past 20. Go Lions.