The Detroit Lions are playing in the last Monday Night Football game of the season. However, due to a little something called Christmas Eve, Monday Night Football is on Saturday this week. The Lions are at home, which is nice. However, they have to play the Atlanta Falcons, who are looking to secure home field throughout the playoffs, which does not bode well.
Every year it seems, there is a team that gets few primetime games that, when all is said and done, don't seem to have deserved it. It would seem this year's team in that vein are the Lions, although, to be fair, aside from the blowout to the Arizona Cardinals, Detroit has played well in most of their games. Additionally, the Falcons may be 12-2, but they aren't quite as good as that record indicates. If things break right, the Lions could win this.
However, that isn't likely. The Falcons may not be as good as their record, but they are a really good team, and they are definitely better than the Lions. Plus, at this point, with Nick Fairley on injured reserve, it seems like half of Detroit's key defensive players are out, and they are also lacking wide receivers. To make matters worse, the one thing Atlanta does really well is through the ball. Matt Ryan is a great quarterback. They have two excellent wide receivers in Julio Jones and Roddy White, and Tony Gonzalez is still a good tight end. They should be able to throw all over the Lions.
At least Atlanta can't run the ball, and their defense is middling. Then again, what of Matthew Stafford? He was awful last week, and he is losing weapons left and right. Maybe Mikel Leshoure can have a big game, but, to make a Falcons comparison, he just seems like a rich man's Michael Turner at this point, and that isn't saying too much. Watching the Lions on offense at this point is just about seeing what records Calvin Johnson can break.
When the season began, there was hope this game would be a big contest. Instead, it's an also ran against a team that should easily beat them. Maybe the Lions pull off a Christmas (or Festivus) miracle, but this banged up team, whom some consider to have gone off the rails, isn't likely to do it. Final Prediction: Atlanta 31, Detroit 20