If the axiom “defense wins championships” is true, then the Lions are going to be OK.
However, they also need to remember they need to score more points then the other team. The Lions did that yesterday, but just barley.
But a win is a win no matter if it’s be 2 or 200. The Lions offense had to get it together enough late in the game and for only the third time in the past 19 years, the Lions have a double-digit win season.
Yesterday’s game against the Vikings wasn’t pretty. But to be fair, not all games can be won by two touchdowns or more every week. Everyone knows that when the Lions offense is clicking, not any teams can stop them.
But I did see some issues on offense that have cropped up from seasons past:
1. Matthew Stafford focusing on Calvin Johnson. I understand that we need to get CJ the ball but it can’t be forced. We have other receivers on the team, most notably Golden Tate. You remember him, right? He’s the guy that stepped in when CJ went down for three games. And the Lions won those games which included two stirring come from behind wins against the New Orleans Saints at Ford Field and the Atlanta Falcons in London.
2. Penalties. I know that with all the rule changes, penalties have played a big part in a lot of games for a lot of the teams. But it seems to me the Lions still have the dumb ones occurring like holding on huge run gains or false starts when facing third and short. They have gotten better but there is still room for improvement.
3. Run game. This isn’t a big of an issue as it has been. But I want to focus on the style more than anything else. There is a lack of imagination in the run game. I understand that you can’t get too cute with running but there has to be better ways to disguise where the run is going. I really like Joique Bell’s abilities and I think because of his success, we can say good-bye to Reggie Bush next year. But the Lions need to develop Bell into more of an all-around player and get him involved on screen passes and more imaginative run plays.
Next week, the Lions head to Soldier Field to face the crumbling Bears…and I expect this game to be a dog-fight as well. Lions need to consider this game the most important one this week and not look past the Bears. They may be in disarray but are still a very dangerous team.