Despite missing the postseason for the sixth time in a row last year, the Detroit Lions are heading into 2023 with optimism.
After finishing with a 3-13-1 record in head coach Dan Campbell’s first season in 2021, Detroit improved to 9-8 in year two with a second-place NFC North finish. After making some changes to boost a bottom-five defense, NFL lines expect another jump in year three as well, with the Lions given top 10 odds to win the Super Bowl.
Detroit Lions, Yay or Nay
Even if Detroit wasn’t expected to be an exciting team to watch this season, its games would still be ones to tune into purely for the passion Campbell brings to the sideline each game.
However, the Lions, who finished top five in the NFL in total yards and scoring last season, should once again be a fun team to watch and bet online, with NFL odds even expecting a one-score game in their NFL Week 1 matchup with reigning Super Bowl champion Kansas City.
Detroit returns its leading receiver in Amon-Ra St. Brown, while having wide receiver Jameson Williams for more than six games will be a solid addition to the offense. The upgrades on defense should help the unit play better as well.
Three Players to Watch
As usual, quarterback Jared Goff will be one to keep an eye on. Goff saw a resurgence to his game in his second season with the Detroit Lions, throwing for 4,438 yards, 29 touchdowns and seven interceptions. Though some believe last year was a fluke, reports from training camp say otherwise, but only time will tell as the season gets going.
With 2022 first-round pick Jameson Williams suspended for six games to start the season, wide receiver Amon-Ra St. Brown will be key in getting the offense going once again in 2023. St. Brown led Detroit with 1,161 receiving yards and six touchdowns, and he’ll need to bring that solid production once again this year.
Defensively, the Lions struggled in the secondary, finishing in the bottom three in yards allowed per game. Detroit will need cornerback CJ Gardner-Johnson to have another strong year, where he recorded six interceptions and 61 solo tackles to bring a boost to the unit.
The Detroit Lions appear to be trending in the right direction, but a few of their games last season went the wrong way due to some spotty defense.
However, Detroit addressed those needs in the offseason, and with not a lot of turnover on a strong offense, the team should see continued improvement upon last season’s finish.
The Lions won five out of their six divisional games last season, and in a shaky NFC North going through its own changes, NFL picks have the Lions as favorites to win it for the first time in 30 years.
If Detroit can continue its upward trend and show some improvement on defense, it’s hard to see the Lions not winning the division title, while a run in the postseason is also likely.