The Lions have lost their fifth game of the last seven, most recently to the New Orleans Saints with a score of 31-17.
Many ask, what has happened to this talent deep team that started 5-0 and was by many considered one of the favorites for the superbowl?
The answer is their mentality. The wide receiver Nate Burleson explains “We have to get guys to understand you don’t have to show how tough you are on each play.”
In a recent stint of dirty plays, none have been worse than Ndamukong Suh’s thanksgiving day face stomp that led to his ejection and a suspension for two games.
Suh is one of the teams defensive stars, who’s talent was missed in the New Orleans Game where his presence could have changed the game.
On top of Suh’s foul, the Lions received 11 fouls for a total of 107 yards versus the Saints. Dumb fouls have nearly put the Lions out of playoff contention, and even their head coach admits it has become a severe problem.
“It’s my job to make sure the trend stops right now,”said head coach Jim Schwartz.
Quarterback Matthew Stafford explained in rage after the Saints Game, ““We kept shooting ourselves in the foot, You can’t have it. I don’t know how many times we had a 20-plus yard pass play called back for something. It seemed like every big chunk we had in the first half was coming back for something.”
Even with it’s recent dirty plays, the Lions continue to impress, holding the Saints to just seven points in the second half and racking up 466 yards on offense.
The real question is whether the Lions will be able to turn itself around in it’s last four games of the regular season to qualify for playoffs. Even with their mid-season fallout, they are on track to qualify for the playoffs for the first time since 1999. Just three years ago their record was 0-16.
The Lions must save themselves from fouls or this years “turnaround season” will simply go to waste.