The last few weeks haven’t been pretty for the Lions. The defense hasn’t been able to stop offenses even when they know what’s coming, and they’ve turned average players into superstars (looking at you, David Moore, Chad Beebe, and Mitchell Trubisky). It’s like the Matt Flynn ascension all over again—three times in a row.
The Lions have looked lifeless and confused, particularly since they lost Golden Tate at the trade deadline—one of the most spirited and vocal leaders of the locker room. With the Lions just about out of the playoff picture, it’ll be a good week if we get a game that’s close in the first quarter.
Bold prediction of the week: Lions keep the game close, finish within one score.
Typically when a team gets beat down, it lights a fire under them and they come back the next week sharp and ready to play a feisty game. That generality clearly doesn’t apply to the Lions since they’ve gotten beat down in back-to-back-to-back weeks.
For the Panthers, however, coming off of a 31-point primetime clobbering at the hands of the Pittsburgh Steelers means they’ll likely be looking for vengeance. If that’s the case, then this Panthers team that boasts the third best rushing attack in the league is going to make the Lions defense look like swiss cheese.
In the unlikely event that doesn’t happen, I’d like to think the Lions have a chance. If the Lions find a way to make Cam Newton uncomfortable in the pocket and make the questionable decisions that he made so frequently during his early years in the league, they could finally generate some turnovers and find a way to stay in the ballgame.
It’s not likely, but it’s not impossible. This is the bold prediction of the week, after all. Who knows? Maybe the Lions find a way to not get pummeled this Sunday.