The Detroit Lions play their home opener this Sunday versus the San Francisco Forty-Niners. What do they have to do to bring home a victory?
Detroit Lions fans have been waiting for months to see their team take the field and this Sunday, the wait is over. The Lions square off against the San Francisco Forty-Niners at home, 1 p.m. kickoff, broadcast on Fox. What has to go right for the Lions to defend the den and bring home a “W” in Week 1?
We don’t want to sugarcoat this article. Betting sites have us as a 7.5-point underdog, tied for being the biggest underdog with the Dallas Cowboys who face off with the world champion, Tampa Bay Buccaneers. So, the margin of error isn’t big.
Some good news involves the health of starting running back, D’Andre Swift, and defensive tackle, Michael Brockers, who have both been cleared to play Sunday. T.J. Hockenson has returned to participate in full practice, as well.
On the negative side the Lions still have some players who are varying degrees of unhealthy; most notably, Left tackle Taylor Decker missed practice on Thursday due to a finger injury that may need surgery and his status has been clarified as “out indefinitely.” The entire Lions injury report is available here on the Detroit Lions website.
Head coach, Dan Campbell, was asked by Detroit media what his thoughts were on the Forty-Niners and his first thought was about dealing with defensive end, Nick Bosa, who was a full participant on Thursday but has been dealing with a knee injury, and the attacking defense. “They’ve got, certainly, some pieces up front, they’ve got a good middle linebacker, and a pretty good secondary”, Campbell added to his comments about the defense in his Monday presser.
Fred Warner was the elite, speedy linebacker Campbell alluded to, with sagety Jimmie Ward as the best member of a solid secondary.
He went on to compliment ‘Niners head coach, Kyle Shanahan, and his ability to design an offense and force teams to play extremely disciplined against them. Offensively, the first player he mentioned was tight end George Kittle, who is moved around and is a do-everything player.