It’s not even November, and we’ve already entered the desperation portion of the Detroit Lions season. Riding a three-game losing streak, the Lions cannot afford many more losses for the entirety of the season if their dreams involve the postseason.
The New York Giants aren’t a good team. If Detroit is a team worthy of any postseason consideration at all, they should be able to handle them easily on their home turf. But the game is all about matchups. So the Lions need good contributions from specifically these five players if they want to get off the schneid.
Coleman had a rough outing last week against the Minnesota Vikings, and with Darius Slay out again this week, he’ll need to rebound in a big way.
The Giants are shorthanded themselves at the wide receiver position, but Lions fans know well just how much of a playmaker Golden Tate is. Coleman will likely see a lot of Tate one-on-one Sunday, and it will be on him to make sure the YAC king doesn’t take his throne at Ford Field.
Damon Harrison Sr.
Snacks says this game doesn’t mean anything more than any other week, despite it being his first crack at the team who traded him midseason last year. Even if it means nothing extra to him, he’ll likely have enough motivation to put the first six games of the season way behind him.
The Lions have been horrible at stopping the run this year, and Harrison is the first person to put the blame on himself. Sunday’s defensive gameplan will undoubtedly be focused on stopping Saquon Barkley, and that starts with Snacks.
New York doesn’t have a great offensive line, so this should be a good opportunity for Snacks to rebound. But with Barkley, beating the offensive line is only half the battle for the defense. You also have to tackle well, which means another key player to this game is...
The Lions’ 2017 first-round pick is teetering on the “b-word” right now, as his play hasn’t seemed to improve from his rookie struggles. His run fits are particularly bad this year, and like many other players on this defense right now, his tackling is poor.
Barkley will make the Lions pay if Detroit tackles like they did against Dalvin Cook last week. Bum ankle or not, Barkley is a superstar that will take a mile if you give him an inch.
With the trade of Quandre Diggs earlier in the week, the Lions will likely throw rookie safety Will Harris to the wolves this week. While the Giants pass offense isn’t exactly a huge threat—especially down Corey Coleman and Sterling Shepard—Daniel Jones can throw a pretty deep ball at times. After all, they call him Danny Dimes.
All eyes will be on Harris to see if the Diggs trade is validated or not. It’s probably not fair to put that kind of pressure on a rookie, but Detroit made this bed. Now they must sleep in it.
Yes, there are key players on offense, too. But after you let Kirk Cousins drop 42 on you and promptly trade away a defensive captain, I’m going to focus a little more on that side of the ball.
Anyways, the Giants’ nickel corner is second-year undrafted player Grant Haley. He’s been riding the struggle bus all year. Lined up opposite Julian Edelman, he allowed nine catches for 113 yards. Adam Thielen went for seven catches, 130 yards and two touchdowns against the Giants.
Amendola is having a nice year in Detroit, with two 100-yard games already this season. There’s a good chance he makes it three this week.