Part of me is still smarting from the Buffalo loss. When I used to play, I was fine with the 24-hour rule. But I struggle with it being a Lions fan! Maybe it was the way Jim Schwartz was carried off the field that rubbed it in. Or maybe it was the way momentum was stopped. Or maybe I just need to get over it.
Looking back to go forward, take out Alex Henery and put in Matt Prater, and that game was won. Make Calvin a touch healthier, or Bush maybe or Bell even, and that game was won. We’d be looking at 4-1 and everything would be good. But moving on….
This next three-game stretch is key. The Lions are away to Minnesota, Home to the Saints and then a trip to London followed by a bye; that gets us to November. Can the offense improve in the short-term? Can the defense be relied upon? Can the kicking game woes be fixed? Can we win?
The defense has certainly led the charge over the last three weeks. With stout performances against Green Bay, New York and Buffalo, they can be relied upon to bring stability to the team. The Lions defense, in the first half of the season, is being talked about as one of the league’s best. I’m still having to pinch myself on that one.
The offense and special teams have let the team down. The Lions will hopefully have found answers to their kicking game questions. They signed Matt Prater this week to replace Alex Henery, who went 0 for 3 last weekend. If Prater can find his 2003 form, things should be rosy.
As for the offense, Matthew Stafford will be looking to Joique Bell, Golden Tate and Eric Ebron this week as his main targets. Tate has been a great pick-up, and Ebron looks to be getting more and more involved. Bell has 225 all-purpose yards in 3.5 games this year. With Bush questionable, Bell will be well-used come the Vikings game.
And this is divisional football we’re talking about this Sunday, which of course counts for double.