Lions’ Aidan Hutchinson addresses hype ahead of 2024 season

Yardbarker

Star pass-rusher Aidan Hutchinson understands his Detroit Lions are no longer flying under the radar after the club was a win away from playing in the Super Bowl this past winter.

“It’s unreal. There’s a lot of hype coming into this year, but I think it’s well-deserved hype,” Hutchinson recently told Eric Woodyard of ESPN. “I think a lot more guys on our team understand what this year is, and we understand what we got and we’re all ready.”

Lions general manager Brad Holmes and left tackle Taylor Decker offered similar comments in September 2023 when the Lions were the betting favorites to win the NFC North title for the first time since the division was formed in 2002. 

Detroit failed to disappoint, as the club went 12-5 to finish the regular season atop the division standings before it notched playoff victories over the Los Angeles Rams and Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

The Lions then took a 24-7 lead over the San Francisco 49ers into halftime of the NFC Championship Game. Amid some controversial decisions made by Detroit head coach Dan Campbell, the 49ers rallied from behind and earned a 34-31 victory to clinch a trip to Super Bowl LVIII.

As of Monday morning, DraftKings Sportsbook listed the Lions second among the betting favorites behind only the 49ers (+250) at +550 odds to represent the NFC in Super Bowl LIX. Hutchinson suggested he and his teammates are embracing such expectations ahead of training camp.

“I think everyone has put everything into this upcoming year, and I feel like for the years to come as well, because it’s not our last year we’re all playing,” Hutchinson explained. “There’s a lot of great players on this team, and I think we could just have repeated success over the next few years.”

Lions legend and Hall of Fame wide receiver Calvin Johnson added that he believes the Lions “can play with anybody” but must first “handle what we do in our division.” 

On Monday, DraftKings Sportsbook had Detroit as the betting favorite at +150 odds to claim the division crown this season. That outlet had the Green Bay Packers second at +210 odds. 

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