The Detroit Lions ended the 2014 season with an 11-5 record and a first game wild card exit. Head coach Jim Caldwell is starting his second year and is looking to bring this team to the next level with his steady, straight forward approach.
Quarterback Matthew Stafford was much improved last season, as new offensive coordinator Joe Lombardi worked on his footwork, his completion percentage and got his interceptions down from 19 to 12. This season, Stafford should take more risks down the field and will have one of the best receiver tandems in the league in Calvin Johnson and Golden Tate as his targets. In the backfield, second-round pick Ameer Abdullah will replace Reggie Bush and join Joique Bell running the ball. Detroit’s offensive line was retooled over the offseason and should be elevated from what we saw in 2014.
With Ndamukong Suh leaving for Miami during free agency, the Lions replaced him on the defensive line with five-time Pro Bowl tackle Haloti Ngata in a trade with Baltimore. Ziggy Ansah should provide double digit sack totals this season provided he stays healthy, and veteran Jason Jones offers inside-out versatility. The Lions secondary remains mostly intact and should continue to give opposing wideouts a tough time.
Detroit has a difficult early season schedule and will be put to the test from the start. If Calvin Johnson can stay healthy and second-year tight end Eric Ebron can make the leap to solid pass catcher, the offense can support this solid defense and the Lions will have a legitimate shot at the NFC North title. Detroit Lions tickets should be in high demand as fans are anxious to see if they can pick up where they left off and head to the post season for the second consecutive year. Be sure to secure your Lions tickets early so you are not shut out of the on-field action.