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Detroit Lions Week 13 rooting guide: Best case scenarios for Lions, Rams picks

A look at the best possible outcomes in Week 13 to improve the Detroit Lions’ draft picks in 2022.

Chicago Bears vs Detroit Lions Photo by Amy Lemus/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Before the Detroit Lions kick off on Sunday, let’s take a look at all of this week’s games and how they relate to the Lions’ draft position in 2022. As of now, the Lions are comfortably in the first overall pick with a 76.6 percent chance of holding onto that spot, according to Football Outsiders.

But it’s not just about that first overall spot. With the Los Angeles Rams continuing to struggle, it’s starting to look like Detroit may cash in with their second first-round pick, courtesy of those Rams in the Matthew Stafford trade earlier this year.

Both the Lions and Rams are in action this Sunday. Here are the preferred outcomes for all of the relevant Week 13 games for Detroit Lions fans rooting for the best possible draft outcomes.

Lions pick

For simplicity’s sake, we’re only going to talk about the four teams with three wins or less.

Eagles (5-7) vs. Jets (3-8) — 1 p.m. ET

Root for: Jets

Pretty easy here. A fourth win by the Jets makes them almost uncatchable with a Lions loss.

Colts (6-6) vs. Texans (2-9) — 1 p.m. ET

Root for: Texans

Seems like a far-fetched win for Houston here, but you can never be too sure at home against a division rival.

Jaguars (2-9) vs. Rams (7-4) — 4:05 p.m. ET

Root for: Jaguars

This is a chance to double up here. A Jaguars’ win gives the Lions some serious cushion for the first overall pick, and a Rams loss potentially helps Detroit’s draft position with Los Angeles’ first-round pick. Plus the emotional damage a loss to the Jaguars would do to Matthew Stafford and company... whew.

49ers (6-5) at Seahawks (3-8) — 4:25 p.m. ET

Root for: Seahawks

Seattle has somehow found itself in the bottom five teams in the NFL, while the 49ers are in a playoff spot. However, it’s another home underdog in a divisional matchup. The 49ers could be on upset alert, and that would be good for Detroit’s first-round pick, but it would be bad for those hoping the Rams get knocked out of the playoffs.

If all goes according to plan, and the Lions lose, the top of the draft would look like...

  1. Lions: 0-11-1
  2. Texans: 3-9
  3. Jaguars: 3-9
  4. Seahawks: 4-8
  5. Jets: 4-8

(two other teams potentially at 4-8)

That would give the Lions a 2.5 win cushion with just five games left. In other words, as long as the Lions didn’t win three of the next five games—Broncos, Cardinals, Falcons, Seahawks, Packers—they would lock in the first pick.

Rams pick

Jaguars (2-9) vs. Rams (7-4) — 4:05 p.m. ET

Root for: Jaguars

Duh.

Buccaneers (8-3) vs. Falcons (5-6) — 1 p.m. ET

Root for: Falcons

This could go either way. The Bucs only matter to the Rams if Los Angeles can win their division (or if TB loses their grasp on it). That doesn’t seem likely, so let’s get another Wild Card team into the mix.

49ers (6-5) at Seahawks (3-8) — 4:25 p.m. ET

Root for: 49ers

The further you can push the Rams down in the NFC—specifically the NFC West—the better. The 49ers currently hold the head-to-head tiebreaker over the Rams, too.

Cardinals (9-2) vs. Bears (4-7) — 1 p.m. ET

Root for: Cardinals

While you could hope the Bears catch the Rams in the Wild Card, that seems highly unlikely. Instead, root for the Cardinals to extend their division lead over the Rams and force LA on the road in the playoffs.

Vikings (5-6) vs. Lions (0-10-1) — 1 p.m. ET

Root for: Vikings

Minnesota is right in the thick of the Wild Card race. If they go on a run and the Rams struggle, they could catch them.

Eagles (5-7) vs. Jets (3-8) — 1 p.m. ET

Root for: Eagles

Okay, the Eagles probably aren’t catching LA, but may as well keep every avenue open.

WFT (5-6) vs. Raiders (6-5) — 4:05 p.m. ET

Root for: Washington

Somehow, WFT has a playoff spot right now. Continue winning and maybe they can steal a higher seed from the struggling Rams.

If all that happens, here’s what the NFC Playoff Picture looks like

  1. Cardinals (10-2)
  2. Packers (9-3)
  3. Buccaneers (8-4)
  4. Cowboys (8-4)
  5. 49ers (7-5)
  6. Rams (7-5)
  7. WFT (6-6)

  1. Vikings (6-6)
  2. Falcons (6-6)

In this scenario, the 49ers jump the Rams, and suddenly Los Angeles would just be a single game out of missing on the playoffs entirely.