Many call the 2018 NFL schedule release an overblown event. Since all of the opponents were already known beforehand, many brush off the announcement as purely marketing for the NFL with no real value.
However, that’s a pretty myopic way to view things. The schedule release allows fans to start planning trips to see their favorite team, it also lets them know when they’re going to be televised nationally, or what kind of weather they can expect each week.
It’s also quite valuable for the players themselves. Most NFL athletes immediately look to the bye week to see when they’ll be able to rest their body for an additional week. Some, too, are interested in the weather they can expect or when they get the opportunity to shine in front of a national audience.
Several Lions players took to social media after the schedule was released on Thursday night to express their feelings. Here’s a sample of them:
Lambeau in late December? Not a fan.
Darius Slay was the first Lions player to break the silence, and his attention immediately went to the Lions’ December 30 season finale in Green Bay. It’s safe to say he’s not a big fan of playing in cold weather:
Green Bay week 17 man it’s go be cold as shit— Darius Slay (@_bigplayslay23) April 20, 2018
The Lions will also play in Buffalo—the site of a ridiculous blizzard-filled game last year—on December 16. Slay is equally worried about that game:
Akeem Spence: Also not a fan:
Bra— Akeem spence (@AkeemSpence) April 20, 2018
Golden Tate, however, had a more optimistic spin on the weather:
Though players always claim “it’s just business” when they are cut or not re-signed by a team, it’s clear by their actions that some take it personally. When the schedule comes out, many of these players are sure to circle the date in their calendar when they get an opportunity to show their former team how badly they screwed up.
Enter, Golden Tate:
Of course, there are former Lions players who are using the same motivation against Detroit. Take, for example, former linebacker/defensive end Brandon Copeland, who was not re-signed by the Lions this offseason after missing 2017 with a torn pectoral. Now with the Jets, Copeland will get his chance at revenge opening weekend, and he made sure to let everyone know it:
Just plain old HYPE
For players, the schedule release is just another sign that football is coming—even if it’s still five months away. So there is just a lot of excitement in the air:
Sam Martin is ready, too.
The Lions social media account is KILLING IT
First, stop whatever you’re doing right now and watch T.J. Lang help reveal the Lions’ 2018 schedule. I promise it is worth your four minutes:
Take a tour of our 2018 schedule with T.J. Lang pic.twitter.com/yb2nE5HP3w— Detroit Lions (@Lions) April 19, 2018
Then there’s the Lions schedule in GIF form. Be sure to pay close attention to the GIFs they chose for both Packers games:
Finally, shortly after the schedule release, a 3.6 magnitude earthquake hit Ontario and could be felt throughout parts of southeastern Michigan. The Lions’ Twitter account was right on top of it:
What was your immediate reaction to the schedule release?