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Lions notes: Detroit named a sleeper for making the NFL playoffs

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NFL.com believes Matt Patricia’s squad can make a leap in year 2.

Detroit Lions v Arizona Cardinals Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images

The first year of the Matt Patricia era in Detroit felt like train wreck. Only three quarters into the season, the Detroit Lions already felt dead in the water. Poor run defense, a beat up Matthew Stafford and a stagnant offense came together to create a season that was over at its half way point.

In Year 2 things may look up, though. A free agency haul, a few starlets in the draft and a healthy Stafford could quickly turn things around for Patricia and his Lions. If things go well enough, they could find themselves in the postseason come January.

NFL.com’s Adam Rank wrote about the State of the Detroit Lions franchise on Thursday. He reviewed parts of the 2018 season, the team's offseason so far, and where he thinks the team may go going forward.

Rank believes that Detroit could have an outside shot to make the playoffs, and that anything less than being in the playoff hunt in 2019 would make it a failed season.

He is also very high on the team’s defense, saying:

The Lions ranked 10th against the run last year and tied for fifth in rushing touchdowns allowed (11). Damon “Snacks” Harrison was an excellent pickup during the season, and I hope they can figure out his contract situation and all of that. There’s a nice little foundation building. Now they just need to pressure the quarterback and they are all set.

  • NFL.com writer and known “Hero” Marc Sessler named a potential first-time Pro Bowler on every NFL team in 2019. Wide receiver Kenny Golladay was chosen for Detroit. He will have an increased role in 2019 with Golden Tate gone for an entire year, and another year of NFL experience should help him get even better this year.

  • Apparently Matthew Stafford has joined the US Women's National Soccer team, per the Detroit Lions official twitter account:

  • Pro Football Focus ranked the players who have broken the most tackles since they started counting stats back in 2006, and former Lions receiver Golden Tate was unsurprisingly on top.