2023 NFL Power Rankings: Detroit Lions skyrocket heading into Week 2
On Thursday night, the Detroit Lions ventured into Arrowhead Stadium and secured a remarkable 21-20 victory over Patrick Mahomes and the Kansas City Chiefs. Riding the momentum of closing the 2022 season with eight wins in their final 10 games, the Lions commenced the 2023 season as the favored pick to clinch their division for the first time since 1993. The question now arises: Where do the Lions stand among the NFL's elite after their thrilling triumph over the Chiefs? Each week, we'll track the Lions' progress by examining four distinct power rankings.
Where do the Detroit Lions Rank in the 2023 NFL Power Rankings?
NFL.com: No. 6
“Dan Campbell probably couldn’t have scripted his team’s road triumph over the Chiefs any better than it turned out. The Lions sent a big message to the rest of the league. Campbell’s “I didn’t learn anything” comment after the game might feel like a trope, but this team had me believing. Did the offense sputter a bit more than I expected against a Chris Jones-less Chiefs defense? It did. Am I worried? Not especially, especially if Jahmyr Gibbs’ role is expanded a bit more. And how about that rookie class? With Gibbs and Sam LaPorta on offense and Jack Campbell and Brian Branch on defense, those first four picks look terrific so far. This roster oozes young, exciting talent.
ESPN: No. 7
“Branch recognized that NFL game speed was faster than college football, but the former Alabama star looked comfortable against the Chiefs. He returned an interception for a 50-yard touchdown against one of the best offenses in the league. “It definitely gives me a boost for my confidence,” Branch said during Monday’s practice. “But each week is going to be a challenging week, and we’ve just got to keep on preparing how we did against Kansas City and just for every week moving forward, we’ve got to do the same thing.”
The Athletic: No. 7
“Detroit fans are going to be nuts at the Super Bowl parade. That’s how this works, right? You beat the champs, you own the belt. I mean, Jared Goff outplayed Patrick Mahomes. But seriously, the Lions, who haven’t won a playoff game since 1991, are 9-2 in their last 11 games.”
MMQB: No. 9
“Signature win for Dan Campbell and the Lions, who still managed to keep a lot of their cards close to the vest. That might be the scariest thing about their narrow victory over the defending Super Bowl champions: Jahmyr Gibbs was a few steps away from multiple grand slams and then he’d get taken out of the game. The toughness of the secondary stood out to me as well. While it’s a Kelce-less Mahomes, it’s still a game against Mahomes nonetheless. And Detroit had him spinning.”