On Tuesday, Tony Dungy said the Detroit Lions made a mistake firing Jim Caldwell. But one of his partners on NBC thinks the Lions are very much headed in the right direction.
Sunday Night Football color commentator Cris Collinsworth told the Detroit media this week that he thinks the Lions are Super Bowl bound in the near future. “I just think the Lions at some point are going to make it happen,” Collinsworth said, according to the Detroit Free Press. “They have too much talent there to not.”
Though the Lions haven’t made it anywhere close to the Super Bowl since 1991—the only time in their history they’ve reached the NFC championship—Detroit has had one of the better teams over the past four years. Their 36-28 record since 2014 ranks them 12th in the league, just above the Atlanta Falcons and just below the Philadelphia Eagles. Those two teams, of course, have been the last two NFC representatives in the Super Bowl.
But having just made the drastic decision of changing head coaches, it’s hard to know where the trajectory of this team is headed. Will Matt Patricia take them to another level? Or will he just be another disappointing branch off the Bill Belichick tree?
Collinsworth mentions the Lions’ talented roster, and he has a fair point there, too. The Lions currently have nine players (not including Dwight Freeney) on the team that have made a Pro Bowl at one point in their career (Darius Slay, T.J. Lang, Haloti Ngata, Matthew Stafford, Ezekiel Ansah, Golden Tate, Glover Quin, Matt Prater and Don Muhlbach).
There are plenty of holes on the defensive side of the roster going forward, but with a defensive coach on the horizon, Detroit could be in for a quick turnaround.
Every year, it seems one analyst or talking head puts the Detroit Lions on Super Bowl watch. Last year, Maurice Jones-Drew predicted the Lions to reach Super Bowl LII. The year before, it was an astrological expert. Now it’s Collinsworth’s turn to join the crew.