People don’t want to admit it, but a lot of the NFL is decided by luck. If you’re one of the teams lucky enough to escape any major injuries in a season, there’s a pretty good chance you performed pretty well. Additionally, there’s fumble luck, referee luck, schedule luck, among plenty of other factors that are out of a team’s control.
But talent gives you a chance. With enough good players, teams can essentially become luck-proof and consistently win in this league.
The Detroit Lions clearly aren’t there yet. We’ve seen it with the years of referee screw jobs and season-crushing injuries. And according to ESPN, they aren’t even close to where they need to be in 2020.
The Worldwide Leader in Sports ran 20,000 simulations of the season based on their Football Power Index metric to determine the ceilings and the basements for the 2020 Lions team, and it’s not a pretty outlook. The prediction model projects the Lions’ absolute ceiling at only 9-7 this year, with a floor of 4-12. It’s the lowest ceiling and floor among all the NFC North teams. In fact, only four teams in the entire NFL (Bengals, Jaguars, Washington, Panthers) have a lower floor than the Lions, per ESPN.
But, hey, if the floor is at 4-12, that means 2020 will be a guaranteed improvement from 2019!
- The Lions worked out a bunch of players again today, and HEY LOOK, it’s a bunch of defensive linemen!
Lions worked out Will Clarke, Kendall Coleman, Jayrone Elliott, Anthony Lanier— Aaron Wilson (@AaronWilson_NFL) August 19, 2020
- D’Andre Swift the next Alvin Kamara? It may not be as far-fetched as you think. Kyle Meinke of MLive explains.
- I jumped on “The Top 10 Pod” hosted by fellow Pride of Detroiter Mike Payton to rank the top 10 Detroit athletes of our lifetimes:
- Lions fans’ biggest frenemy, Nate Davis of USA Today, dropped his NFL record predictions for 2020. This year? 7-9.
- Neat little video of the Lions staff preparing the practice facility for training camp:
- We end today’s notes with an interesting story from former NFL OL Geoff Schwartz, who spent an offseason with the Lions in 2016 under then head coach Jim Caldwell and general manager Bob Quinn:
I had to ride a bike for 20 minutes in the morning and 20 minutes after meetings at 930pm. For one pound at 30 years ago. I’d missed weight before and never gotten fined. And they told me if I lost BF, my weight wasn’t as important. This “punishment” was so stupid— Geoff Schwartz (@geoffschwartz) August 18, 2020
A couple former Lions offensive linemen didn’t take so kindly to Schwartz’s side of the story. Here are their tweets, along with Schwartz’s responses:
That’s not true because I was told to lose body fat and the weight wasn’t as important. So clearly that wasn’t the expectation.— Geoff Schwartz (@geoffschwartz) August 18, 2020
I did. I lost body fat, which is what they asked of me.— Geoff Schwartz (@geoffschwartz) August 18, 2020