The Detroit Lions will close out the preseason on Sunday afternoon with a 4:30 p.m. ET contest against the Pittsburgh Steelers. It will be the team’s last chance to examine the depth on their roster and clean things up before the regular season.
It’s an opportunity for us to get ready for the regular season, as well. Every week, we’re going to be giving you picks and predictions for Detroit Lions games—and every other game on the NFL regular schedule—including special “picks” posts for “Thursday Night Football” and “Monday Night Football.”
So some people on our staff are trying to warm up the picks machine with their best guess for Sunday’s preseason finale.
Predicting a preseason game is a fool’s errand, but also a fun mental game. The Lions and Steelers are both expected to be teams going through a bit of a rebuild. Detroit is still in Year 2 of their rebuild, and while they look to be improved from last year, expectations still remain in check. The Steelers are testing life without Ben Roethlisberger for the first time in over a decade, and that isn’t likely to be smooth sailing right away.
Both teams are expected to play their starters for about a half, but there is one noticeable exception that could turn the tides in this game: the Lions are resting starting quarterback Jared Goff. The Steelers, on the other hand, are expected to play both quarterbacks challenging for the starting job. Mitch Trubisky will kick things off for the Steelers offense, while rookie Kenny Pickett will play cleanup.
With all of that in mind, here is who we are picking for Sunday’s game: