It's time to make some bold predictions about the Lions.
Since NFL analysts have broken down what Detroit's divisional opponents accomplished this offseason, there has become increased hope that Detroit is not that far off from having a successful 2020 campaign.
Birkett explains, "Matthew Stafford's back injury cost the Lions wins in 2019, but it also afforded the team an opportunity to add high-end talent to its roster that no other team in the division can match."
The Bears, Vikings and Packers did not make many impactful signings that drastically have set them apart from the Lions.
"There weren't any game-changing free-agent signings in the division this offseason. The Chicago Bears game 30-year old pass rusher Robert Quinn the biggest contract, while the Minnesota Vikings added likely just one starter," Birkett wrote.
Here are three bold predictions for the upcoming Lions season:
1.) Matt Patricia will win NFL Coach of the Year
If there ever was a time that Patricia needed to prove he belonged in the league as a coach, this is the season.
Patricia has more of his types of players, a returning Matthew Stafford and a revamped defense.
The drastic turnaround of the Lions this season will garner national attention.
2.) Matthew Stafford leads Detroit to its first playoff victory since 1991
A healthy Stafford will be looking to finally silence his critics in 2020.
After missing half of the 2019 season due to injury, a rejuvenated Stafford will lead Detroit to the playoffs, and will play a major role in Detroit's first playoff victory since 1991.
3.) Jeff Okudah will lead the NFL in interceptions
If Okudah can hit the ground running, his NFL career can produce plenty of interceptions and pass breakups.
In his rookie season, Detroit's pass rush will improve, and Okudah will be the main beneficiary.
Look for Okudah to become a ball-hawk early and to establish his presence in the first contest of the season against the Bears.