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Non-Playoff NFL Team Seasons in Review | Detroit Lions

Next up in our season reviews of the teams that did not make the NFL Playoffs in the Detroit Lions. The Lions, like their stadium, surprised at times this season. 

CLICK HERE for the season review of the Philadelphia Eagles!

Detroit Lions nfl playoffs
Credit: Rick Osentoski/AP Photo

Lions Suffer Close Losses Early

Detroit should have beat the Chicago Bears in Week 1, but D’Andre Swift dropped the game-winning touchdown pass.  That bad play rolled into next week, as the Lions got stomped by soon-to-be-MVP Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers. 

Then, somehow, Detroit managed to go into Arizona and surprise the Cardinals on a last-second field goal to give themselves their first win and the Cardinals their first loss on the season. The Lions played the New Orleans Saints to a one-score game, so it isn’t that far-fetched to say they could’ve been 3-1 going into their bye week. 

Lions Strong Start After Bye Week was Short-Lived

The Lions came out of the bye and won their next two games against the Jacksonville Jaguars and the Atlanta Falcons, but it can be argued that the Falcons should’ve won that game after Todd Gurley’s mishap. So, back to .500 and they are looking like a playoff team, right? 

Nope. After double-digit losses to the Indianapolis Colts and Minnesota Vikings, they dropped to 3-5 and again found themselves in the back of the pack. The game against the Washington no names provided a roller coaster of emotions, as they blew a 24-3 lead in the third only to win on a last-second field goal. By the way, that last drive was 16 seconds long. You would think that a win like this would help the team get momentum. Instead, they were shut out by the Carolina Panthers, then they dominated by the Houston Texans on Thanksgiving.  

Matt Patricia Lions
Credit: Lachlan Cunningham/Getty Images

Lions Fire Head Coach and GM

The Lions’ loss on Thanksgiving would be Matt Patricia and Bob Quinn’s last hurrah, as they were both be fired the following week. That would bring back some intensity on the field, as the Lions pulled off a comeback win against the Bears. 

Sitting at 5-7, would Detroit have a chance at the NFL Playoffs? No, they would get beat in each of their last four games. This included a 47-7 domination by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers where Tom Brady did not even need to play after halftime. 

It was yet another season to forget for Lions fans. However, it will be another eventful offseason, with them being one of many teams looking to fill big roles.

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