Will Detroit Lions Struggle Again in 2013 With Second Most Difficult Schedule?

By Dan Parzych
(Tim Fuller/USA Today Sports)

After finally breaking their playoff drought in 2011, last season turned into nothing but a disaster for the Detroit Lions as they turned out to be one of the biggest disappointments with a 4-12 record. What makes things even worse–it won’t get any easier in 2013 when taking a look at their schedule.

The Lions are tied with the New Orleans Saints and St. Louis Rams for the second most difficult schedule heading into the 2013 season. On top of playing the three teams from the NFC North that each recorded winning records last year, 2013 also happens to be the year Detroit plays the teams from the AFC North and NFC East.

With this in mind–it’s no wonder the Lions ended up with the second most difficult schedule.

On paper, there’s no reason why Detroit shouldn’t be able to bounce back considering they have two of the league’s best players in Matthew Stafford and Calvin Johnson. Once again, this duo showed just how dangerous they can be as Johnson set a single-season record 1,964 receiving yards and Stafford fell 33 yards short of his second-straight 5,000-yard season.

The only way the Lions are going to have any chance of reaching the playoffs in 2013 is if these two players can carry the offense once again. Of course, an offense can only do so much if the defense is failing to do their job–so it should be interesting to see how Detroit turns out from that department.

Either way, if Lions fans were frustrated with the way 2012 turned out, it should be interesting to see what happens next year with this type of schedule.

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