Can the Detroit Lions pick up their first win of the season?
The Detroit Lions return from bye week still looking for their first win in 2021 for first year head coach Dan Campbell. The authors of the Free Press have made their choices; Will the Lions in Steel City produce a head-turner?
The Steelers have won four straight wins and have one of the best defenses in the NFL, but there are good reasons to believe that the winless Lions can claim their first win on Sunday. Pittsburgh celebrates an emotional win over the Bears on Monday night, playing with three major conference games ahead of them in a short week, and not having the kind of high profile offensive that gives Lions seizures. The Lions are rested, have said goodbye, and should be taken with Decker’s return. I’m not going to go so far as to predict a fuss here. The Lions haven’t played well enough long enough to believe they’ll take the streets and beat a playoff contender. But that feels like a game that will be decided in the final minutes and that may result in a big mistake. Selection: Steelers 20, Lions 17.
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You had two weeks to prepare. Taylor Decker should be back. Pittsburgh is a (relative) mess. So why not There has to be a victory at some point, right? Selection: Lions 19, Steelers 16.
I’m not a big fan of coach Dan Campbell’s going into offensive encounters. I understand that he wants to look like he’s not just watching the Titanic go down. But any improvement has to come from the players. Coaches cannot be the saviors for this team. If the Steelers had beaten the Chicago Bears easily on Monday night, they might have missed the Lions. But not after a close match. The Lions are extending their winless streak in Pittsburgh to 11 games, dating to 1955. But at least they avoid a blowout and look more competitive. Selection: Steelers 30, Lions 21
The Steelers are everything Lions want to be: tough, physical, stable, well trained, and respected year after year. But the Lions are nowhere near that level. The Lions will play better than their disaster against the Eagles. Yes, it couldn’t be worse. But the Lions just don’t have enough on either side of the ball to get that close. Selection: Steelers 27, Lions 19.