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Week Seventeen: Chicago Bears (3-12) @ Detroit Lions (7-8)


MichiganCardinal
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797464039_LionsLogo.png.9df710377f5b23e3a50dca9630295bb0.png          vs.          bears.png.88c8337f915831d42aec1e4e7c021e7e.png

Setting: 01/01/2023 1:00pm EST on FOX

Site: Ford Field in Detroit, MI

Weather: Climate Controlled

Opening Spread: Lions -5

All-Time Series Record: Bears lead 104-76-5

Last Meeting: 11/13/2022, Lions won 31-30

 

Chicago Bears (3-12)

Head Coach: Matt Eberflus (1st Season: 3-12)

Projected Starting QB: Justin Fields (2nd Season: 5-20)

Last Week: 35-13 L vs. Buffalo Bills (12-3)

Looking Ahead to Week #18: TBD v. Minnesota Vikings (12-3)

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Your Detroit Lions (7-8)

Head Coach: Dan Campbell (2nd Season: 10-21-1)

Projected Starting QB: Jared Goff (7th Season: 52-45-1)

Last Week: 37-23 L @ Carolina Panthers (6-9)

Looking Ahead to Week #18: TBD @ Green Bay Packers (7-8)

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Elsewhere in the NFL

Primetime: Cowboys @ Titans (TNF), Steelers @ Ravens (SNF), Bills @ Bengals (MNF)

1:00pm: Cardinals @ Falcons, Jaguars @ Texans, Broncos @ Chiefs, Dolphins @ Patriots, Colts @ Giants, Saints @ Eagles, Panthers @ Buccaneers, Browns @ Commanders 

4:05/4:25pm: 49ers @ Raiders, Jets @ SeahawksVikings @ Packers, Rams @ Chargers

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The 180 I've seen from pundits on the Lions playoff chances after last week seems a bit extreme. It's dropped maybe 10%. They don't control their own destiny, but it's not like the teams they need to lose are the Chiefs and Bills.

I'd be very surprised if they lose this game to the Bears. I think they'll be ready to go and the Bears already appear to be looking to 2023. They gave up against the Bills. Fields may break a run or two, but 
I don't think they'll be able to keep up with the Detroit offense in a dome. Swift was limited in the first game in Chicago, and Reynolds was out. Detroit should have no problem scoring if they can hang onto the ball.

Meanwhile Seattle has lost five of their last six and is about to play a Jets team, possibly with Mike White returning, that is in a very similar playoff position as Detroit... Washington hasn't won a game since late November, and is playing a Browns team that has Deshaun Watson and would have no problem ruining some playoff aspirations. Even the Giants - with one win in their last six games - playing the Colts is no gimme.

It wouldn't shock me at all to see Seattle and Washington lose while Detroit and Green Bay win, to setup a win-and-you're-in situation for Week 18 in Lambeau.

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They won’t beat anyone in the league if they play like they did against Carolina.  Tackling was atrocious at all levels of the defense and decision making from LB and Safety were horrible.  The part that is really concerning is the OL has brutal the last two weeks.   These guys need to be the foundation of the team and they’ve been dog shit the last few. 
 

Credit to Goff for not panicking among the OL meltdown and taking nothing when nothing is there.  Tua and Russ were both great examples yesterday of what happens when your QB tries to be Superman and always make a play.  Protect the football at all costs and he’s been doing that.   He’s been a great game manager and that’s a compliment and not a knock.  
 

They can figure it out but need big big steps forward next week.    I’ll talk about GB after next week but I really hope the Vikes beat them. 

Edited by Hongbit
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tua wasnt trying to be superman, he made turnover worthy plays like he's done all season, only this time the other team didnt drop the ball.  that game was tua in a nutshell: cant throw downfield, makes bad decisions, gets bailed out by the two fastest receivers in football and a good game calling coach.

lions running game has collapsed along with their oline.  not sure if that's because of bad oline play or that other teams are selling out against the run and daring goff to beat them.  whatever theyre doing is working.

it would be nice to see more of jaymo.

if that oline cant dominate the bears, theyre in trouble.

on defense, they really need elliot back because the safety play in that game was brutal.  of course, everyone on defense was brutal.  cant keep contain on defense, cant cover receivers, cant keep gap discipline.  it was a cornucopia of errors.  

the bears have a good running game and will shred them if they dont fix it.

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12 minutes ago, Hongbit said:

They won’t beat anyone in the league if they play like they did against Carolina.  Tackling was atrocious at all levels of the defense and decision making from LB and Safety were horrible.  The part that is really concerning is the OL has brutal the last two weeks.   These guys need to be the foundation of the team and they’ve been dog shit the last few. 
 

Credit to Goff for not panicking among the OL meltdown and taking nothing when nothing is there.  Tua and Russ were both great examples yesterday of what happens when your QB tries to be Superman and always make a play.  Protect the football at all costs and he’s been doing that.   He’s been a great game manager and that’s a compliment and not a knock.  
 

They can figure it out but need big big steps forward next week.    I’ll talk about GB after next week but I really hope the Vikes beat them. 

Agreed but the same is true of the game against the Patriots, and we haven't seen the lack of effort shown against the Patriots since... I think it was actually encouraging that they made it closer at the end against the Panthers. That game could have been a 30-point blowout easily.

I think their effort last week is more indicative of how hard it is to win in the NFL, combined with a short and weird travel week due to the weather, combined with a very young team. They just simply weren't going to win six in a row, or nine of ten. I think we see a return to the median these last two weeks. Maybe not domination like we saw against the Jaguars, but a return to what we saw against the Giants, Bills, and Vikings.

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9 minutes ago, Hongbit said:

Random side point:  

Evan Brown is the Lion version of Victor Reyes and the Castrii.   Serviceable player on a rebuilding team but the kind of guy that shouldn’t have a roster spot when the talent level gets better.  I really hope that time is next year.  

In fairness, if it weren't for Ragnow's injury last year, followed by Big V's injury in preseason, he wouldn't be a starter. Kudos to him for staying healthy, which isn't easy on our offensive line for some reason. He's done well enough for himself for being a 6th offensive lineman.

Let someone else pay him how Quinn did Big V though.

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5 hours ago, MichiganCardinal said:

Agreed but the same is true of the game against the Patriots, and we haven't seen the lack of effort shown against the Patriots since... I think it was actually encouraging that they made it closer at the end against the Panthers. That game could have been a 30-point blowout easily.

I think their effort last week is more indicative of how hard it is to win in the NFL, combined with a short and weird travel week due to the weather, combined with a very young team. They just simply weren't going to win six in a row, or nine of ten. I think we see a return to the median these last two weeks. Maybe not domination like we saw against the Jaguars, but a return to what we saw against the Giants, Bills, and Vikings.

just to play devil's advocate, you dont think they were ever going to win 9 of 10 but you think they'll win 8 of 10?  

i dont know how these last two games are going to go, but i'd be more surprised by 2-0 than 0-2.  1-1 is the most likely scenario, imo.  amd unfortunately that wont be good enough this year.

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37 minutes ago, buddha said:

just to play devil's advocate, you dont think they were ever going to win 9 of 10 but you think they'll win 8 of 10?  

i dont know how these last two games are going to go, but i'd be more surprised by 2-0 than 0-2.  1-1 is the most likely scenario, imo.  amd unfortunately that wont be good enough this year.

I guess it helps to preface my response by saying that I thought preseason this would be a 9-8 team that could win a playoff game. So generally I think they’re a pretty good team, or have the capacity to be one. If someone else thinks they should be a 5-win team or a 7-win team, I can understand being more pessimistic about these last two games.

That said, when they started 1-6 I’m not going to pretend like I still thought they would finish 9-8. I just think they’re a very young team that is going to have a few clunkers along the way. They got away with playing poorly against the Jets and they’ve had two real clunkers - the Patriots and the Panthers.

Any given Sunday, I think they’re a better team than either the Bears or the Packers. They did beat each of those teams earlier in the season. I still wouldn’t say it’s likely they win them both, but I give them an 80% chance to beat the Bears and a 50% chance to beat the Packers in Lambeau. Together that’s 40% to win both. Which is about the same I would put at them making the playoffs because I think it’s even less likely either the Seahawks or Commies go 2-0.

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38 minutes ago, buddha said:

just to play devil's advocate, you dont think they were ever going to win 9 of 10 but you think they'll win 8 of 10?  

i dont know how these last two games are going to go, but i'd be more surprised by 2-0 than 0-2.  1-1 is the most likely scenario, imo.  amd unfortunately that wont be good enough this year.

I didn’t think they would play as badly as they have the past 2 weeks.  

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57 minutes ago, buddha said:

if theyre not going to go for one of the qbs, then it has to be a cb and a dlineman, right?  

I expect them to draft Noah Sewell.  Not sure if that’s going to happen with the 2nd first rounder or if it’s with a second rounder.   CB with the Rams 1st rounder.  

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3 hours ago, Hongbit said:

I expect them to draft Noah Sewell.  Not sure if that’s going to happen with the 2nd first rounder or if it’s with a second rounder.   CB with the Rams 1st rounder.  

i dont want them to draft a linebacker that high.  get a more premium position.

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4 hours ago, MichiganCardinal said:

I guess it helps to preface my response by saying that I thought preseason this would be a 9-8 team that could win a playoff game. So generally I think they’re a pretty good team, or have the capacity to be one. If someone else thinks they should be a 5-win team or a 7-win team, I can understand being more pessimistic about these last two games.

That said, when they started 1-6 I’m not going to pretend like I still thought they would finish 9-8. I just think they’re a very young team that is going to have a few clunkers along the way. They got away with playing poorly against the Jets and they’ve had two real clunkers - the Patriots and the Panthers.

Any given Sunday, I think they’re a better team than either the Bears or the Packers. They did beat each of those teams earlier in the season. I still wouldn’t say it’s likely they win them both, but I give them an 80% chance to beat the Bears and a 50% chance to beat the Packers in Lambeau. Together that’s 40% to win both. Which is about the same I would put at them making the playoffs because I think it’s even less likely either the Seahawks or Commies go 2-0.

i think the bears game is 60-40 with the lions getting a slight edge because theyre playing at home. their last game was right down to the wire.  again, the bears are a very good running team and you just saw what the panthers did to the lions (and what fields did in the first game). 

the packers are just a better team, even with all their injuries.  they outplayed the lions in detroit and the lions won because rodgers threw three red zone picks.  that's lucky, imo.  i give them a 25% chance in green bay if the packers need the game to make the playoffs.  root hard for the viqueens on sunday.

the lions are a very young team who has overperformed a bit in the second half of the season.  i hope they keep it up, but im not expecting it.  but i didnt expect them to beat the jets either...

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1 hour ago, buddha said:

i think the bears game is 60-40 with the lions getting a slight edge because theyre playing at home. their last game was right down to the wire.  again, the bears are a very good running team and you just saw what the panthers did to the lions (and what fields did in the first game). 

the packers are just a better team, even with all their injuries.  they outplayed the lions in detroit and the lions won because rodgers threw three red zone picks.  that's lucky, imo.  i give them a 25% chance in green bay if the packers need the game to make the playoffs.  root hard for the viqueens on sunday.

the lions are a very young team who has overperformed a bit in the second half of the season.  i hope they keep it up, but im not expecting it.  but i didnt expect them to beat the jets either...

I'll give you the Packers game, because there was certainly a degree of turnover luck that helped us get that win... The Bears have lost 8 in a row though. They've gone two months without a win while the Lions have beaten multiple playoff contenders in that time.

The Lions shut down the likes of Dalvin Cook and Saquon Barkley, and contained Devin Singletary, before being lit up by the Panthers on a short week with questionable field conditions. I get some recency bias, but a return to the mean seems much more likely than the sky falling on the Lions run defense. The Lions took about ten steps forward in the last two months and a couple steps back on Saturday. I don't think we should ignore the net gain.

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On 12/26/2022 at 4:52 PM, buddha said:

if theyre not going to go for one of the qbs, then it has to be a cb and a dlineman, right?  

It depends on their philosophy and how they want to build this team. I hate to say it, but Tight End is an option too. Someone like Michael Mayer TE/Notre Dame, Darnell Washington TE/Georgia or Dalton Kincaid/TE Utah become options as well. We know this organization, more than any other over the past decade plus, loves 1st round TEs.

Edited by Mr.TaterSalad
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8 minutes ago, Mr.TaterSalad said:

It depends on their philosophy and how they want to build this team. I hate to say it, but Tight End is an option too. Someone like Michael Mayer TE/Notre Dame, Darnell Washington TE/Georgia or Dalton Kincaid/TE Utah become options as well. We know this organization, more than any other over the past decade plus, loves 1st round TEs.

The organization might have historically but I don’t think there is any indication that the front office we have now has any interest in taking a tight end that high, unless it’s a freak of nature like Kyle Pitts.

I think we’ve seen with the success of guys like Wright and Zylstra in Hockenson’s absence that this offense doesn’t need some dynamic threat at the TE position to be successful. They need a quality blocker who can get open on a designed route. Those grow on trees.

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4 minutes ago, MichiganCardinal said:

The organization might have historically but I don’t think there is any indication that the front office we have now has any interest in taking a tight end that high, unless it’s a freak of nature like Kyle Pitts.

I think we’ve seen with the success of guys like Wright and Zylstra in Hockenson’s absence that this offense doesn’t need some dynamic threat at the TE position to be successful. They need a quality blocker who can get open on a designed route. Those grow on trees.

Believe me, I don't want a TE in any of the first 3 rounds and I'll go nuclear if they waste a 1st round selection on the position. It's just that there are people in this organization, like Director of College Scouting Dave Sears and Director of Player Personnel Lance Newmark, who have been consistent figures in the organization when they have drafted 1st round TEs in the past. I'm not saying it was Newmark or Sears advocating for Pettigrew, Ebron or Hock, they just happened to be here when those picks were made.

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i dont think they view the tight end position that highly and i suspect they will not take one high in the draft.  maybe in the later rounds for depth purposes.  they seem more focused on using tight ends as blockers than receivers.  those guys are much easier to find.

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On 12/26/2022 at 4:52 PM, buddha said:

if theyre not going to go for one of the qbs, then it has to be a cb and a dlineman, right?  

Based on what we know about Holmes, I don't think he's focused on positional need as much as he's focused on BPA. Sewell wasn't the biggest need then he double dipped on D-Linemen with back to back picks and thank god he took McNeil after the Levi disaster. He then traded up for Jamo when there were more pressing needs because he's a gamebreaker.

Based on this philosophy, I wouldn't be shocked if Holmes took somebody like Bijan Robinson, if he's still there, with the second 1st to complete the offense because he's a game breaking talent and arguably one of the best RB prospects to come out in years so while DT and CB are the two biggest needs, I would be a bit surprised if Holmes picked those two positions on Day 1 simply due to need.

Edited by NYLion
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