After a 2-0-1 start to the season, the Detroit Lions have dropped three-straight games to fall to 2-3-1, which puts them in dead-last place in the NFC North.
For most NFL teams, the goal heading into a new season is to win the division and to make the playoffs.
If the Lions want to make the playoffs this season, they will not only have to handle their own business, but they will also need a little help along the way, as chances are, they will not win out.
That being said, here are the games you should be keeping a close eye on in Week 8 and who you should be rooting for, in addition to rooting for the Lions to beat the New York Giants.
First, here is a look at the schedule for Week 8.
|1 p.m.||New York Giants at Detroit Lions (FOX)||DET -6.5||49|
|1 p.m.||Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Tennessee Titans (FOX)||TEN -2.5||46|
|1 p.m.||Los Angeles Chargers at Chicago Bears (FOX)||CHI -4||41|
|1 p.m.||Seattle Seahawks at Atlanta Falcons (FOX)||SEA -3.5||54|
|1 p.m.||New York Jets at Jacksonville Jaguars (CBS)||JAX -6||41|
|1 p.m.||Philadelphia Eagles at Buffalo Bills (FOX)||BUF -1.5||43|
|1 p.m.||Cincinnati Bengals at Los Angeles Rams (CBS)*||LAR -13||48.5|
|1 p.m.||Arizona Cardinals at New Orleans Saints (CBS)||NO -10.5||49|
|1 p.m.||Denver Broncos at Indianapolis Colts (CBS)||IND -5.5||43.5|
|4:05 p.m.||Carolina Panthers at San Francisco 49ers (FOX)||SF -5.5||41.5|
|4:25 p.m.||Oakland Raiders at Houston Texans (CBS)||HOU -6.5||51.5|
|4:25 p.m.||Cleveland Browns at New England Patriots (CBS)||NE -13||46|
|8:20 p.m.||Green Bay Packers at Kansas City Chiefs (NBC)||GB -4||47.5|
|Monday, Oct. 28|
|8:15 p.m.||Miami Dolphins at Pittsburgh Steelers (ESPN)||PIT -14.5||43|
Ignore the AFC vs. AFC Matchups
Of course, when it comes to the Lions making the playoffs or not making the playoffs, AFC vs. AFC matchups play absolutely zero roles. So, feel free to ignore the following games this week.
New York Jets @ Jacksonville
Oakland @ Houston
Denver @ Indianapolis
Cleveland @ New England
Miami @ Pittsburgh
AFC over NFC, every time
If the Lions can find a way to win the NFC North, they will automatically clinch a home playoff game. That being said, if they come up just short in the North, they will earn a Wild Card spot in the NFC, which means having a better record than the other NFC teams that did not win their division. So, make sure to root for the AFC over the NFC today, including these matchups.
*Bolded teams are who Lions’ fans should be rooting for today!
Tampa Bay @ Tennessee
Los Angeles Chargers @ Chicago
Philadelphia @ Buffalo
Cincinnati @ Los Angeles Rams
Green Bay @ Kansas City
NFC vs. NFC games are not always so obvious
Like we said above, if the Lions fail to win the NFC North, they will rely on having a better record than the other NFC teams to get a Wild Card spot. So, here are the NFC vs. NFC games that you should pay close attention to, along with who you should be rooting for.
Seattle @ Atlanta
Atlanta is no threat to the Lions playoff chances while Seattle is clearly in the drivers seat for a Wild Card spot. Root for the Falcons
Arizona @ New Orleans
With New Orleans sitting at 6-1, we will assume they are in the playoffs already, while Arizona has won 3-straight to move to 3-3-1 on the season. Let’s get the Cardinals out of the picture. Root for New Orleans.
Carolina @ San Francisco
Similar to the previous game, San Franciso is a virtual lock for the playoffs at this point while Carolina is currently 4-2 and right smack in the middle of the playoff picture. Root for the 49ers.