Marvin Jones Jr. is back home in Detroit after a two-year stint in Jacksonville, but this isn’t the same team he left behind. Far from it.
“You step outside, everybody’s talking about (the Lions). There’s definitely a big buzz — a buzz that I haven’t really seen here,” he told Tim Twentyman on the latest episode of “Twentyman in the Huddle.”
He’s right. The red-hot Lions are the talk of the town — the favorites to win the NFC North even after accomplishing an impressive turnaround resulting in a late-season winning streak. Down in Jacksonville, Marvin Jones experienced the same thing.
“The trajectory of our seasons last year was kind of the same. After our loss to us,” Jones said, referring to the Jaguars blowout loss to the Lions in Week 13, “I don’t think we lost a game after that and we got into the playoffs, got the division, got the home playoff game in which we won.”
Last season, the Jaguars lost eight of their first 12 games. Then after the 40-14 loss to the Lions in December, they kicked it into high gear and went on to win six games straight, including a playoff game, before losing to the Super Bowl winning Kansas City Chiefs. Meanwhile last season, the Lions lost six of their first seven games, then won eight of the next 10 — almost making the playoffs.
So how can the Lions push themselves further over the edge like the Jaguars did to get themselves to the playoffs?
“It would be insane. Obviously that’s a goal, but it starts here. It starts in our preparation and what we do. Obviously we have the pieces, talking about last year and how they finished but this is a new year. There is that expectation but we have to put in that work and that’s what we’re doing now,” Jones said.
You can find the whole conversation here.
And onto the rest of your notes.
- Another Allen Park visit from Calvin Johnson. You love to see it.
- On ESPN’s First Take, Stephen A. Smith raised a few eyebrows after declaring the Lions will be the surprise team to challenge the Eagles in the NFC. Detroit Free Press’ Marlowe Alter has that story.
- Sports Illustrated’s Connor Orr has penned a piece entitled: “The Jared Goff Discourse Is Getting Out of Hand.” He believes there are some misconceptions emerging about what kind of player he is.
- If you haven’t seen the guys answering which Taylor Swift songs, you have to. It’s amazing. You might see “Sparks Fly” between Jared Goff and Jahmyr Gibbs as they build that chemistry to make a QB-receiver duo of your “Wildest Dreams.” Are you “Ready For It?” Sorry, I work in TV. They make me read stuff like this all the time so you must suffer too.
- Charles Harris had a breakout season in 2021 but a groin injury kept him on the sidelines for a solid chunk of the season. The Detroit News’ Justin Rogers explains how the 2017 first-round pick is working to get back to 2021 form.