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Can the Detroit Lions surprise and make the playoffs?

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Is this the year the Lions actually host a home playoff game?

Hardly anyone outside of Detroit thought the Lions would win seven games this season, let alone through 11 games. But the Lions’ fourth quarter heroics have catapulted them into first place in the NFC North.

A lot has happened since the last time the Detroit Lions won the division and hosted a home playoff game. And, I mean a lot! In the 23 years since the Lions were last able to hoist a division champion banner they’ve experienced much more sorrow than celebration.

But with a nice lead atop of the NFC North with only five games to go, it looks like this year could be the year the Lions put up more than a participation banner in Ford Field.

Can the Lions make a serious run this season? Do they have enough to hold off the rest of the division foes to capture the division for the first time in over two decades?

A majority of playoff models say the Lions are in good shape right now, especially with the Minnesota Vikings’ loss on Thursday night.

But the end of the season is no walk in the park. The Lions have tough road games against the New Orleans Saints, New York Giants, and Dallas Cowboys here down the stretch. If they can come away with just one road victory and hold serve at home, they have a real shot to make this year the year.