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2006 Lions Preview

The first game of the season is coming up very soon, and with that, comes the 2006 Lions Preview.  The preview isn't necessarily a look at the team or something of that matter, but rather a look at the schedule and a prediction of the final record.  

The schedule Detroit plays is nothing to look past.  There's a lot of good teams on it, and also a very rough stretch near the end of the season.  And what a way to start the year, the season opener is against the defending NFC champion Seattle Seahawks.

Let's get right into the preview starting off with the first game of the season, a matchup with reigning MVP Shaun Alexander and the rest of his 'Hawks.

WEEK 1 - vs Seattle
Although it would be nice to see a win to open the season, I just don't think it can happen. Seattle is coming off of a trip to the Super Bowl, and has practically the same team back. Detroit will put up a good fight, but in the end, just come up a little short.
PREDICTION: Loss

WEEK 2 - at Chicago
This matchup showcases possibly the two best teams in the NFC North, and is an early test of what to expect in 2006.  If the Lions could pull off the win on the road, then it'd be a good start for the race to win the NFC North.  Unfortunately, I just don't see it happening.  The Lions have struggled on the road many times in the past, and I have the feeling that'll continue in Chicago.
PREDICTION: Loss

WEEK 3 - vs Green Bay
Detroit comes back home to face another NFC North team, but this time gets the win.  Green Bay is not a good team.  Even though Brett Favre is their QB, the rest of the team has little to no talent.  Detroit wins this pretty easily and improves to 1-2.
PREDICTION: Win

WEEK 4 - at St. Louis
While returning to the former home of Mike Martz, the Lions can't capitalize.  The Rams just have too many different weapons that can beat you, and in the end, that is what will happen against Detroit.
PREDICTION: Loss

WEEK 5 - at Minnesota
Detroit hasn't beat Minnesota in a long time, it's been more than a few years.  That streak will continue since this game is in Minnesota.  I'd give the Lions a chance if it were at home, but in Minnesota will be a recipe for the Vikings to win.
PREDICTION: Loss

WEEK 6 - vs Buffalo
The Lions finally get their second win of the season as they face the Bills for the second time in all of 2006.  This result will be different than the preseason as Detroit comes out on top to go to 2-4.
PREDICTION: Win

WEEK 7 - at NY Jets
The Jets don't have the greatest team in the league, but they're a little better than the Lions.  In New York, the Jets will pull of a close victory at the end with a late field goal to seal the deal.
PREDICTION: Loss

WEEK 8 - BYE

WEEK 9 - vs Atlanta
In what would probably be considered an upset, the Lions take on Mike Vick and the rest of the Falcons and I think have what it takes to win.  It'll be a tough task stopping the Atlanta offense, but if Detroit can put up a good amount of points, then I think they get the victory.
PREDICTION: Win

WEEK 10 - vs San Francisco
There's not many teams worse than the Lions in the last few years, but San Francisco is one of them.  Detroit wins easily.
PREDICTION: Win

WEEK 11 - at Arizona
I think Arizona is going to surprise a few people this season.  They've got all of the players to make a run for the playoffs and won't deter for Detroit.  The Lions will have a tough time getting the win in this game, and in my mind, don't get it done.
PREDICTION: Loss

WEEK 12 - vs Miami
Miami was on the rise at the end of last season, and although they did lose to Pittsburgh to start off the year, they will be very good in 2006.  When Daunte Culpepper gets back to his own great self, the Dolphins will be a great team, and too much for Detroit to handle.
PREDICTION: Loss

WEEK 13 - at New England
Gillette Stadium in December is a pretty rough environment to play at.  It also doesn't help that the team they're playing is the New England Patriots.  The Pats take this one easily.
PREDICTION: Loss

WEEK 14 - vs Minnesota
The Lions finally snap the losing streak to the Vikings as they make a comeback to get the victory against Minnesota.  The Vikings come close, but lose the game late.
PREDICTION: Win

WEEK 15 - at Green Bay
The span of games against NFC North teams continues as Detroit travels to the frozen tundra of Lambeau Field.  The Lions are able to pull off the season sweep of the Packers with a victory, and I think that does happen.  Green Bay is going to be worse than most think, not better.
PREDICTION: Win

WEEK 16 - vs Chicago
This game is kind of a tossup.  It really could go either way.  I think Chicago will play really well, and could take the win, but Detroit squeaks by to get the victory.
PREDICTION: Win

WEEK 17 - at Dallas
The final week of the season has Detroit looking to get to the .500 mark for the year, but Dallas wins with a good showing from Drew Bledsoe.
PREDICTION: Loss

RECAP
The Lions finish the year 7-9, just one game below that promise land of .500.  Either way, 7-9 technically is an improvement, but it still won't sit well with most fans.