Thanksgiving didn’t go as planned for many in Detroit. The Lions had a golden opportunity on Thursday, but squandered it.
Sitting just two games behind the Minnesota Vikings, Detroit could have come within striking distance of first place in the NFC North. The conditions were perfect. A national stage. A sold-out Ford Field. Riding high on a three-game winning streak with a fairly healthy offense and a couple key contributors returning on defense.
The stage was set for the Lions to sweep the divisional foe, and for the third straight week, they came out flat. After a disastrous first quarter, the Lions found themselves in a hole they would never end up pulling themselves out of.
As a result, their NFC North title chances are essentially gone, and now they must play near-perfect football the rest of the way to clinch a playoff berth. So today’s Question of the Day is:
Do you feel better, worse or the same after the Lions’ loss on Thanksgiving.
My answer: The same. You’d think after that grim intro that I am really down on this team, but that’s not the case.
Last night’s 5 positive takeaways piece was not written just to try and make people happy after a tough loss, I honestly thought there were real strides made in that game and I came out feeling better than I went in.
I thought the defensive line played arguably its best game of the season. The run defense was dominant for all but one series in the entire game. The pass rush was actually getting to Case Keenum somewhat consistently and a lot of times without the need of extra blitzer. Detroit also got two blocked kicks.
Offensively, the Lions were only the second team to put up over 20 points against the Vikings in the past nine games. Marvin Jones Jr. looks dominant, while you could see flashes of good pass protection during pockets of games.
Of course, none of this changes the fact that the Lions lost on Thursday and their division chances are all but dashed. Still, it’s hard for me to get too down about that. The Vikings are 9-2, and it’s quite possible they’d be running away with the division even if Aaron Rodgers was still playing. The myth that the division was wide open once Rodgers broke his collarbone was exactly that: A myth. Nothing was handed to the Lions, so I’m not all that bummed about them missing out on the division.
That being said, the wild card race just got a bit tougher. The Lions’ margin of error is now incredibly thin, and Detroit probably cannot lose more than one of their five final games.
So while I actually think this was a much improved performance than the past two weeks, giving me hope that Detroit could actually go on a run in December, the fact remains that they now have to go on a run, and cannot afford any hiccups. So you take the good with the bad.
How do you feel after the Lions’ loss to the Vikings
This poll is closed
A lot better
A little better
A little worse
A lot worse