The Detroit Lions are 0-2 on the season, and after a Week 2 loss to the Green Bay Packers, they very much look like a team in the early stages of a rebuild. Each game saw a rapid collection of poor decisions that added up to big mistakes over a short time period, and while the Lions made a strong effort to keep it close in Week 1, they were well out of this week’s game by the start of the fourth quarter.
The national writers took notice of the Lions' efforts, and for the most part, they remained close to where they were last week, though there was one publication that actually moved Detroit up a spot in the rankings.
Let’s take a look at where the Lions sit in the national eye.
NFL.com, Rank: 31 (Previous: 31)
“If you happen to be a Lions fan who fell asleep at halftime on Monday night, might I suggest you close out this browser tab and steer clear of sports websites and any news-focused platforms for the next 48 hours. Remember life as it was before you drifted off to peaceful slumber: It was a world where Jared Goff outplayed Aaron Rodgers, where T.J. Hockenson couldn’t be covered near the back pylon, where the worried groan of polite Midwesterners functioned as the soundtrack of Lambeau Field. Yes, the lovable underdog Lions were the kings of football on this night ... or at least the portion of the night in which you were physically conscious. Sweet dreams.” — Dan Hanzus
ESPN: 30 (Previous: 30)
“Fantasy surprise: RB Jamaal Williams. Williams was brought to Detroit to be a solid complement to RB1 D’Andre Swift. However, with Swift battling a nagging groin injury, Williams has “been the rock,” according to Lions coach Dan Campbell, after Week 1. “Jamaal has been the rock because he’s been there every day,” Campbell said. “He’s been steady; he’s been sound. We know exactly what he is. He’s been very durable and dependable.” In Week 1, Williams became the first Lions running back to rush for at least 50 yards and a touchdown in a game and produce at least 50 receiving yards since Joique Bell on Dec. 7, 2014, and the effort produced 25 fantasy points. The flex role could fit him in certain situations, but obviously not every week.” — Eric Woodyard
USA Today: 29 (Previous: 29)
“If they continue coughing up 30+ points per outing, a streak that now extends to eight games, Detroit will continue to consistently get kneecapped.” — Nate Davis
Yahoo Sports: 29 (Previous: 30)
“The Lions aren’t good, but they have shown some decent signs, whether a comeback to almost tie the 49ers in Week 1 or leading at the half at Lambeau Field on Monday night. Dan Campbell seems like the type of coach who can keep his team engaged, even when the record will look ugly.” — Frank Schwab
MMQB: 28 (Previous: 25)
“I think a lot of people are enjoying getting their shots in at Dan Campbell because of the persona he has taken on since arriving in Detroit. I’m actually interested to see how it works out and willing to give his schtick a chance. But the team isn’t very good right now.” — MMQB Staff rotating rankings
CBS Sports: 30 (Previous: 30)
“They hung around early against the Packers, but that defense is too undermanned to win consistently this year. They will play a lot of high-scoring games.” — Pete Prisco
Sporting News: 28 (Previous: 28)
“The Lions didn’t look like total lambs against the 49ers, which is important to now they’re also playing hard for their new coach, Dan Campbell, despite their obvious talent dearth.” — Vinnie Iyer
Washington Post: 30 (Previous: 30)
“Jared Goff looked terrific and the Lions led the Packers at halftime Monday night at Lambeau Field. Then reality set in.” — Mark Maske ($ubscription required)