Fans and players alike are feeling the love that has come with the recent winning ways. The team currently sits in second place in the NFC North division, ahead of its Thanksgiving matchup with the Buffalo Bills.
Buffalo is considered among the best teams in the league. With a 7-3 record and a team full of stars, the Bills are near the top in terms of the NFL’s finest.
When asked about using the upcoming game as a proverbial "measuring stick" game, Campbell noted he sees it as a game-by-game evaluation. Rather than use one big game to evaluate his team, he likes to measure success weekly.
“I mean, I know there’s something to that, but at the same token, it’s another team, it’s another chance,” Campbell said. “I don’t really, I think any time you win in this league, you had to do some things right, no matter who you’re playing. It all comes down to the same things, you’re trying to give yourself the best opportunity to win a game. To me, if we can do that and we’re competitive and we come out on top by the end of this game, then we did things right. If we play good, clean football, I like our odds.”
Led by quarterback Josh Allen, the Bills boast a prolific offense. Allen suffered an elbow injury in a loss to the New York Jets three weeks ago, one that Campbell noted doesn’t seem to hinder him.
“If it is hurt, I don’t see it,” Campbell explained. “I see the same old guy that can make plays, and he can hurt you.”
The Bills have leaned more on the run game in recent games, as Allen recovers from the injury. Because the offense offers a dual-threat passer, Campbell is expecting Buffalo to deploy a heavy dose of runs between Allen and running backs Devin Singletary, James Cook and Nyheim Hines.
“They leaned on it, they leaned on it,” Campbell added. “Those backs did a good job, and when you incorporate that with this quarterback, it’s a whole other element. I know they’ve traditionally thrown it, but we’re anticipating they’re gonna try to run it. That was a good recipe for them, so I would think they’re gonna try to do a lot of those things, because they did have success against Cleveland. Now, I still say this quarterback is obviously a huge part of everything, he is the biggest part. But, we’re ready for whatever they throw at us.”
Okudah has been the team’s best corner this season, as part of his resurgence. Without him, Detroit will lean on a plethora of players to help combat Buffalo’s Stefon Diggs and Gabe Davis.
In the win over the New York Giants, defensive backs Will Harris and Jerry Jacobs took most of the available reps in Okudah’s absence. Campbell was quick to point out that Amani Oruwariye will also be in the mix.
“I think you’re gonna see all three of these guys,” Campbell said. “There’s a good chance you see all three of them. All hands on deck this week.”
In other injury news, wide receiver DJ Chark is expected to see a heavier workload on Thursday, after logging just 11 snaps Sunday. Chark had missed six games with an ankle injury, prior to returning from injured reserve against the Giants.
“I think it was really actually good for him,” Campbell said. “He had 11 snaps, but just to get his legs back under him, get in there and move around a little bit. I know he came out of the game feeling pretty good, so we think certainly he’s gonna be able to take a bigger load this week, which is good.”
Campbell labeled the chances of defensive end Romeo Okwara playing Thursday as “probably unlikely.”
1.) After a two-game road trip in which Detroit claimed its first two wins away from home in Campbell’s tenure as head coach, the Lions are expecting to return home to a raucous crowd on Thanksgiving.
“I already thought about that. That’s one of the first things I thought of after this game on the plane ride home," Campbell expressed. "It’s like, man, this place is gonna be… Because it’s been good. It’s been electric, and I can only imagine now. I already know, it’s gonna be on fire. It’s gonna be great. Yeah, it’s gonna be great.”