The (4-8) Detroit Lions are heading out west to face off against the (3-9) Arizona Cardinals in week 14. This game may not have playoff implications but it could affect the 2019 NFL draft order. If the season were to end right now the Cardinals would have the 4th pick and the Lions would have the 5th pick. The Cardinals are coming off an impressive victory over the Packers. Whereas the Lions are coming off of a tough loss to arguably the best team in football, in the Rams. Both the Lions and Cardinals are in their first seasons with a new head coach. Not the start you really want for what fans hope to be a long tenure.
The Arizona Cardinals are led by rookie quarterback, Josh Rosen. Now Rosen does turn the ball over a lot, but I think Cardinals fans should be excited about him going forward. He has shown a lot of growth since he took over the starting job early on in the season. We will see what he can do against the suddenly surging Lions defense. There is one player for the Cardinals that I will always root for, Larry Fitzgerald. Fitzgerald is one of my favorite non-Lion players of all-time. He shows nothing but class and will be a first ballot hall of Famer. Hard not to like him. The Arizona secondary, led by Patrick Peterson, is also a concern for Detroit coming into this game.
Another concern for the Lions is the play calling from offensive coordinator Jim Bob Cooter. I would be willing to bet that the Lions first play of the game is a LeGarrette Blount run up the middle. Any takers? On a better note, I feel like Matthew Stafford will have a decent game on Sunday. He has had a lackluster season but he is due for a good game. Unfortunately, it sounds like the Lions will be without rookie running back, Kerryon Johnson. Which is a shame because the Cardinals have been very vulnerable against the run this season. The Lions defense has been playing at a new level since they acquired Damon ”Snacks” Harrison. It has been fun to watch undrafted free agent Mike Ford. He has been lining up opposite of Darius Slay at cornerback and has been impressive, to say the least.
I know a lot of people are hoping that the Lions tank the rest of the season. I am not one of those people. Worry about the season during the season. Worry about the draft during the off-season. Don’t get me wrong, who wouldn’t want a top-five pick in a defense-heavy draft? But over the years I have learned to take any wins you can get. Whether the Lions pick top five or top ten, I trust Bob Quinn to draft the right person.
Mike’s not so fun fact of the day: LeGarrette Blount has the highest percentage of runs for two yards or fewer at 54%. That is the highest percentage in the entire NFL.
Until next time, One Pride