The Detroit Lions’ season is just two games old but game three marks a near-desperate situation. The Denver Broncos pose a formidable challenge as the Lions look to avoid a disastrous 0-3 start.
Here is what the Detroit Jock City staff sees for the game ahead.
Braden Shackelford (0-2) – At 0-2, the Lions have looked pretty good for two quarters and pretty terrible for six. But it’s still too early to say one way or the other what this means about this year’s squad. I’m going to mark this game against the Broncos down as a win because the Lions are pretty good at home. Let’s not forget, they went 7-1 at home last season with their only loss coming at the hands of Buffalo when the Lions couldn’t hit a field goal from anywhere on the field. The 0-2 start stinks, but it’s not nor crippling. That said, starting the season 0-3 with the next game on the road in Seattle would be really tough to come back from.
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Erik Schlitt (0-2) – This Denver defense is scary. Real scary. Linebackers Von Miller and DeMarcus Ware lead the leagueâ€™s top pass rushing defense. They generate pressure on the QB on over 50% of their snaps. When pressured Matthew Stafford‘s completion percentage drops to below 40%. Not good news for the already banged up signal caller. To make things worse, Aqib Talib and Chris Harris Jr. are the best cornerback duo in the NFL. It could be a long night for Calvin Johnson and Golden Tate. Denverâ€™s weakness is in the trenches and if the Lions can control the line of scrimmage theyâ€™ll have a chance to be successful. The Lions keys to victory will be to pressure Peyton Manning up the middle on defense and on offense theyâ€™ll need to get some push up front in the run game. This is the Lions first home game and itâ€™s in primetime, so I expect to see a more focused and motivated Lions team on Sunday night. I just donâ€™t think itâ€™ll be enough. Lions drop to 0-3. Lions 17 Broncos 24.
Nate VanNorwick (2-0) – The Lions schedule isnâ€™t going them any favors after an 0-2 start. Still licking their wounds from last week (haha like a cat get it), they now face a guy named Peyton, who is salivating at the thought of facing the Lions, both for their lack of a pass rush and because of a secondary that has been torched in the past two week. The worst part for the Lions is that on the other side of the ball the Denver defense might have the best secondary in the game, and they have two excellent pass rushers in DeMarcus Ware (who the Lions pass over to draft Mike Williams) and Von Miller. The Lions will be helped by the return of LaAdrian Waddle, but it wonâ€™t be enough. Denver 27, Detroit 13.
Matt Snyder (1-1) – The Lions are going to have to win the battle up front if they have any hope of beating the Broncos on Sunday Night Football. If the defensive line fails to collapse the pocket consistently get to Peyton Manning he’s going to be able to pick the secondary clean one small chunk at a time. Unfortunately I see the greatest NFL quarterback of all time having a terrific day and the Lions falling to 0-3. Broncos 34, Lions 24
Mike Rizzo (0-2) – The Detroit Lions are going into their home opener needing a win. Denver is 2-0 thanks to late comebacks in their first two weeks. The Lions offense hasn’t clicked and with a banged up Matt Stafford against the Denver defense I think this game could get ugly, especially with the likelihood the Lions will again be without DeAndre Levy. I think the Lions fall to 0-3 and Denver wins. Broncos 31, Lions 13
Aaron Huizenga (1-1) – The Lions over the past few years have shown a tendency to perform well in primetime games and are desperate for a win. Denver comes in 2-0 but looking a bit shaky offensively. I think the decline of Peyton Manning is a little overblown and he will find plenty of passing lanes in this one. Detroit needs to do a better job protecting Matthew Stafford and will have a difficult task Sunday night against one of the best teams in the league against the pass. Denver will stay unbeaten as the Lions continue to search for answers. Denver Broncos 31, Detroit Lions 21
Zac Snyder (2-0) – I fear Peyton Manning and the Broncos will use the short to intermediate passing game to pick the Lions defense apart but I do expect the first home game of the season and a national television audience to provide a boost. The Lions defense will have the benefit of a home crowd making things difficult on the opposing offense so I expect better results. On the other side of the ball, DeMarcus Ware and Von Miller scare me for what they might do to Matthew Stafford and the offensive line but again, I expect a bounce-back performance from the coaching staff on down. It won’t be easy and it might be ugly, but ultimately a win is a beautiful thing. Lions 23, Broncos 20
Those are our predictions, feel free to leave yours in the comments section down below.