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Bears, Birds & Big Cats: A Detroit Lions bye week viewer’s guide

Picking the best games to watch in the absence of Lions football.

NFL: Kansas City Chiefs at New England Patriots David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

The Detroit Lions won’t be on action this Sunday as they have reached their Week 6 bye. While the team won’t be on TV this week, that isn’t gonna stop many Lions fans from spending another Sunday sitting on the couch watching football while the existential dread sets in.

Here are the best matchups to watch this weekend when you choose to spend a nice fall Sunday on your couch instead of just going outside or something.

Channel is listed for games that will be aired in Detroit via 506 Sports.

The 1 p.m. slate

Chicago Bears @ Miami Dolphins (FOX)

The Chicago Bears have won three straight. Their defense is as great as we expected and usually-bad Mitch Trubisky threw six touchdowns two weeks ago against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. On the other hand, the Dolphins have lost two straight after a hot start and the offense had a meltdown late in a loss to the Cincinnati Bengals last week. The Bears should be able to roll over the skittish Ryan Tannehill and the Dolphins, but Trubisky throwing into an elite secondary like the Dolphins’ gives this game potential to be a sloppy, exciting, mess.

Pittsburgh Steelers @ Cincinnati Bengals (CBS)

This game should have a lot of points. The Steelers have been reeling recently, but their high flying, talented offense put up 41 on the Falcons last week. This week Big Ben and his boys face off against a Bengals defense that has been awfully disappointing this season. While the Bengals defense hasn’t been up to snuff so far Andy Dalton and the offense have been incredible. Pittsburgh hasn’t been able to stop anyone of defense this season, and A.J. Green and Joe Mixon fantasy owners have to be licking their lips with this match up on the horizon.

Los Angeles Chargers @ Cleveland Browns

I dub this one “The Misery Bowl”.

The Chargers are 3-2 and the only teams that have beaten them are undefeated. They haven’t looked as great as we’d hoped this season, but one can argue Philip Rivers has been the third-best quarterback in football this year. The defense finally seems to be getting it together and they look like a force to be reckoned with. The Browns are a scrappy bunch of misfits who—despite a 2-2-1 record—are a few bounces of the ball from being 5-0.

Both of these teams have been incredibly unlucky over the years. The Browns misfortune has reared its head multiple times this season, and you have to feel like the Chargers are due to implode any minute now. This won't be the best game this week but it sure has a chance to be the dumbest.

Other matchups

Carolina Panthers @ Washington: A team with elite rushing offense that is prone to self destructing and losing games they should win vs. a team with elite rushing defense that is prone to self destructing and losing games they should win.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers @ Atlanta Falcons: In case you really like points but would rather watch a FOX broadcast than a CBS broadcast.

Seattle Seahawks vs. Oakland Raiders: Russell Wilson is fun. It’s in England. That’s really it.

Arizona Cardinals @ Minnesota Vikings: Josh Rosen is an exciting rookie and there is always a chance that the Vikings implode again.

Indianapolis Colts @ New York Jets: I guess this is a good game to watch if you happen to be a fan of either the Colts or Jets.

Buffalo Bills @ Houston Texans: If you aren’t a fan of football, then this is the game for you.

The 4 p.m. slate

Baltimore Ravens @ Tennessee Titans

The afternoon slate is bad. So bad that the Titans may be involved in the most interesting game. The Titans and Ravens are both teams that have a chance to sneak into a first-round bye as the AFC falls apart around them. This game should be an old-fashioned slug fest that may have huge tie breaker implications in December.

Other matchups

Los Angeles Rams @ Denver Broncos: The Broncos are bad and the Rams are good.

Jacksonville Jaguars @ Dallas Cowboys (CBS): By virtue of the Cowboys being involved, this is the game CBS is pushing as the game of the week. It won't be.

Sunday Night Football

Kansas City Chiefs @ New England Patriots (NBC)

This is a story as old as time. On one side we have the older, wiser team with all the experience in the world. A team overflowing with championship pedigree that has already etched their name into the history books of this league. On the other, the young, flashy, new kids on the block. The new challengers entering the champion’s ring with a chance to unseat the king and take the throne as their own.

Dramatics aside, this is a chance for the Chiefs to silence anyone who still is somehow doubting them. A win in Foxborough will put the AFC firmly in their grasp and give Patrick Mahomes the signature win he needs for his budding MVP campaign.

A win for the Chiefs will be huge because, as we all know, any team that beats the Patriots has a real chance at the Super Bowl.