After going 3-13-1 in 2021, most seem to believe the Lions will at least double their win total in 2022 and some (including myself) believe they will at least triple their win total from a year ago.
In order for the Lions to take a big leap forward during the upcoming season, multiple things are going to have to go their way, including quarterback Jared Goff raising his game to a whole new level. If Goff is able to step up, and the offensive line can remain healthy, the Lions could end up with a top 12 or so offense in the NFL. But, if Goff does not step up, what could be a solid offense may not live up to expectations.
In addition, the Lions' defense is going to have to be MUCH better than it was in 2021 when they were one of the worst defenses in the NFL. Adding Aidan Hutchinson will help the cause but it is going to take more than just him to get the defense to where they want to be.
100,000 simulations project where Detroit Lions will finish in 2022
In a recent article published in The Athletic, Austin Mock uses 100,000 computer simulations based on his NFL projection model to project how each team will fare during the 2022 season.
As you can see below, Mock's model has very little faith in the Lions during the upcoming season.
From The Athletic:
- Mock’s odds to win the NFC North: 2.6%
- BetMGM’s odds to win the NFC North: +850 (10.5%)
- Mock’s odds to make the playoffs: 13.0%
- BetMGM’s odds to make the playoffs: +350 (22.2%)
If Things Go Right:
Jared Goff rediscovers some of his early Los Angeles career success and leads an above-average Lions offense to a playoff berth. In 2021, the Lions managed to rank 22nd in offensive EPA/Play, per TruMedia. If Goff can up his play a little bit, things could look a lot brighter in Detroit this fall.
The Lions offensive line performs at a high level throughout the season. Penei Sewell is a star in the making, and the rest of the group is nothing to sneeze at. A strong offensive line could go a long way for a team that doesn’t have an elite arm behind center.
The secondary doesn’t end up at the bottom of the NFL. The Lions secondary doesn’t inspire much confidence. Throw in the fact that their linebackers aren’t great either, and you could say they have the worst back-seven in the NFL. If they can manage to not be terrible, that could go a long way for Dan Campbell’s club.
If Things Go Wrong:
The defense is just bad, like really bad, and the Lions are once again picking in the top five in the NFL Draft. Aidan Hutchinson should boost a defensive line that is lacking any star power, but beyond him, things could get rough. The Dan Campbell rebuild went better than many thought in Year 1. There is optimism heading into Year 2, but until the defense is addressed further, this team is stuck.
Lions Super Bowl Projection:
My model gives the Detroit Lions a 0.5% chance to win the Super Bowl, which is 24th-best in the NFL.
Nation, how do you think the Detroit Lions will fare in 2022?