OK, everybody. Last week was all fun and games as the Lions beat up on the New York Giants at home on Monday Night Football. It was grand, but that is in the rear view mirror now. This week, the Lions have to hit the road to play the Carolina Panthers. A win here would really put Detroit on the NFL radar, I reckon, but this is not likely to be an easy game.
At least Carolina’s defensive strength doesn’t cancel out Detroit’s offensive strength. The Panthers have a strong front seven, and it is hard to run on them, but the Lions still like to throw the ball. Don’t expect Reggie Bush and Joique Bell to do much in the running game, but they will be part of the passing game. I am very curious to see how Matthew Stafford does. He looked great last week, but what about this week? He’s on the road, and the Panthers have a stronger pass rush, led by Greg Hardy. The Panthers don’t have a very good secondary, so it could be another big day for Calvin Johnson and Golden Tate. Although, I am little concerned about the Lions’ offensive line, particularly with injury questions at right tackle.
My biggest concern is the Detroit Lions’ secondary, though. Bill Bentley is out for the year, and several other players are banged on. The Panthers aren’t a particularly good passing team, but Greg Olsen is a good tight end, and Kelvin Benjamin was impressive in his first NFL game. Benjamin is a big guy. Can anybody on Detroit stay with him? Cam Newton didn’t play last week, but he should be good to go this week, and he is also a threat running the ball. That being said, much like the Panthers, the Lions are good at stopping the run, and the Panthers don’t have very good running backs.
This game really comes down to which team does better in the passing game. Carolina’s offensive line isn’t good at all. Can Ziggy Ansah and company take advantage of that? I think they need to. I am also curious to see how Jim Caldwell and his coaching staff manage a closer game, as I don’t expect another easy win. Also, what about Nate Freese kicking out of doors?
There are too many questions and concerns, and not enough comments, for the Lions this week. I can definitely see them winning this game, and that would be big. Or, at least, as big as a win in the second week of the season can be. However, I can’t quite take them to pull the upset. I mean, I could, but I would be making a liar of myself, and I won’t do that. Final Prediction: Panthers 20, Lions 17