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Lions mailbag: How realistic are Detroit’s playoff chances?

Jeremy and Erik discuss the probability that the Rams beat the Seahawks, and the Lions defeat the Packers.

NFL: Detroit Lions at Green Bay Packers Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports

If you want a raw number, the Detroit Lions’ playoff chances currently reside between 15 and 20 percent by most probability models. FiveThirtyEight has them at 17 percent. The New York Times has them at 19 percent. Football Outsiders is far less optimistic, posting their odds at 13 percent.

But let’s do a little deeper of analysis. As we’ve broken down earlier, to make the playoffs the Lions first need the Seattle Seahawks to tie or lose to the Los Angeles Rams. Then they need to beat the Green Bay Packers on “Sunday Night Football.” (There’s one, more complicated scenario, too.)

So how realistic are those outcomes? How likely are the 6.5-point underdog Rams to pull off an upset in Seattle? How do the Lions match up against the Packers this week?

That’s one of our bigger topics on the Week 18 Midweek Mailbag. That discussion begins at the 24:00 mark of the podcast—just as we come out of the first break.

Here are the other topics on this week’s show:

  • What is James Houston’s ceiling and when can we expect him to hit it (4:00)
  • How concerned should be we about Jeff Okudah’s future after back-to-back benchings? (11:10)
  • Did the Lions overachieve, underachieve or meet expectations in 2022? (15:40)
  • Who would make for the best matchup in Wild Card week for the Lions? (32:15)
  • Is D’Andre Swift back? Is it worth talking an extension for him? (33:30)
  • What about Jamaal Williams’ future with the team? (35:30)
  • Have the 2022 season been the “best case scenario” for the Lions? (38:00)
  • What is the biggest regret from the 2022 season? (42:20)

You can listen to the entire episode below:

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