Lions to embrace spoiler role vs Packers to end season

Lions to embrace spoiler role vs Packers to end season

NFL

Lions to embrace spoiler role vs Packers to end season

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The Lions are giving head coach Matt Patricia and general manager Bob Quinn at least one more season, which is surprising, given how bad the team has faded in the second half of the year. It seems like forever ago that the team was 2-0-1, but that was their record heading into Week 4. Now, however, the Lions are an embarrassing 3-11-1, and sit in last place in the NFC North.

Dec 22, 2019; Denver, Colorado, USA; Detroit Lions wide receiver Kenny Golladay (19) celebrates with wide receiver Chris Lacy (15) and wide receiver Travis Fulgham (14) after scoring a touchdown against the Denver Broncos in the third quarter at Empower Field at Mile High. Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

On the other side of the fence, the Packers are currently on top of the world — having just locked up the division title with a huge Week 16 road win in Minnesota on Monday night. Not only that, a win against the Lions could see them earn the No. 1 seed in the NFC Playoffs — with the road to the Super Bowl in the conference going through Lambeau Field. At the very least, a victory would give them the No. 2 seed, and they’d be looking at a first-round bye, with the ability to rest their players for a week, and also take some extra time to gameplan for their next opponent. 

The Packers have been the NFC’s most surprisingly positive team this season. It’s safe to say no one could have predicted that they’d be sporting a 12-3 record, with a great opportunity to get win No. 13 on Sunday. Green Bay is listed as a 12.5-point road favorite, according to Sports Betting Odds, so they’re on track to get another huge divisional win. 

Dec 23, 2019; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers (12) celebrates after the game against Minnesota Vikings at U.S. Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports

However, it won’t be easy, as the Lions aren’t just going to lay down and die, while their division rival waltzes into Ford Field and continues to roll in front of their home fans. It sure won’t be easy, with third-string quarterback David Blough under center, but the Lions have at least been competitive in games with him, and they certainly won’t just let the Packers roll into their house and dominate them. The Lions will look to do all they can to embrace the spoiler role, as they’ve had a disappointing season, so this is essentially their Super Bowl. Some of their players could be on the move in the coming months, with some changes in store, so they’ll be looking to do whatever they can to help their job security going forward. 

Dec 23, 2019; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Green Bay Packers running back Aaron Jones (33) celebrates his touchdown during the fourth quarter against the Minnesota Vikings at U.S. Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

Still, the Lions are overmatched here, and head coach Matt LaFleur has made it clear that his innovative offensive playcalling is a force to be reckoned with. In just his first year as head coach, he’s already has tremendous success, and has given the team a lot to build on going forward. The Lions will have their hands full on Sunday, but don’t expect them to just mail it in. 

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