With the Detroit Lions at 1-4 through five weeks, the hope for a special season has faded fast. I suppose there could be some sort of miraculous cure that comes at the bye week, but even the heavier Kool-Aid drinking fans are starting to come to the realization that this team is just nowhere near good enough to compete for the postseason this year.
So, yeah, that means another season where we’re giving a heavier focus to next year’s draft before we even hit Halloween.
But, hey, that’s where the good news starts! The Lions have two first-round picks thanks to the Matthew Stafford trade, and guess what? The Rams look like crap right now, too? With the way things are currently trending, it’s not completely out of the question that Detroit could be headed toward two top-10 picks.
Of course, there’s a ton of football to be played and plenty of opportunities for teams—yes, including the Lions—to right the ship. But here’s where the Lions’ first-round picks stand after Week 5 of the NFL, according to the website Tankathon.
Note: Remember tiebreakers are decided by strength of schedule. Tankathon uses the full 17-game schedule to calculate strength of schedule, not just games played thus far.
Lions’ pick: Fourth overall
The Lions are tied for the worst record in the NFL after the league’s only winless team—the Houston Texans—won on Sunday. The Lions, Panthers, Steelers, Commanders, and Raiders are the only 1-4 teams remaining, and as of right now, the Lions have the fourth-easiest schedule among that group of five—hence the fourth overall pick.
The upcoming schedule for the Lions suddenly looks daunting. They have a bye this upcoming week, but five of their next six games come against a team with a winning record: Cowboys (4-1), Dolphins (3-2), Packers (3-2), Giants (4-1), Bills (4-1). Their only respite is a Week 10 game in Chicago against the Bears.
Next week: Bye
Rams’ pick: 13th overall
The Rams are one of a whopping 11 teams with a 2-3 record right now. There could be a lot of movement with that group of teams, but right now the Rams are right in the middle of that group of 11.
And while there is certainly an expectation that Los Angeles should turn it around, there are some very concerning developments that suggest this won’t go away soon. The Rams haven’t just lost three games, they’ve been blown out in each. The Bills wiped them out 31-10, the 49ers dominated them 24-9, and the Cowboys handily beat them 22-10.
Los Angeles has scored more than 20 points in just a single game, as their offensive line is currently in shambles. They rank 31st in PFF’s pass blocking grade and have allowed the most sacks in the NFL (21). As a result, Matthew Stafford has been a complete turnover machine, leading the NFL with seven interceptions, and second in fumbles lost (3).
Defensively, they’re still a decent team, but until they can get it together offensively, it may not matter.
The good news for Los Angeles is this week they face a Panthers team who just fired their head coach. But after that—and the subsequent bye—they’ll have to face a 49ers team who already beat them and a Bucs team looking for revenge from the divisional round of the playoffs.
Next week: vs. Panthers (1-4)