The Detroit Lions are coming off quite a disappointing season in 2012. After finally breaking through to the playoffs in 2011, expectations were fairly high for Detroit last season. What transpired was a dreadful four-win campaign, and a last place finish in the NFC North.
Now heading into 2013, expectations are once again rising. The Lions have had a good offseason, after attaining the services of running back Reggie Bush, and fielding a very solid draft class. The offseason of course didn’t come without its losses, but overall, most would agree the Lions are in better shape heading into 2013.
So what are the realistic expectations for the Lions, and more importantly, for head coach Jim Schwartz?
Schwartz is on the hot seat, no doubt about it. A team can’t go from the playoffs, to four wins, and no one be held accountable. That has to fall on someone, and Schwartz is the most likely candidate. If Detroit comes out and puts up even a five or six win season, I still think Schwartz will get the axe. He’s going to have to lead this team in, or around the playoffs. As long as the Lions are in the wild-card race, Schwartz should buy himself another year.
If he can at least put some energy back into the franchise and the fan base, it should go along way. Players like Bush will definitely help that process, but it’s still ultimately about putting Ws on the board.
Arguably the biggest thing against the Lions’ playoff chances, is the fact that they play in the loaded NFC. Playoff spots are going to be extremely hard to come by, and it’s certainly up in the air if Detroit has enough to get there.
If I had to put a number on it, I think Schwartz needs a minimum of eight wins to save his job.
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