Week seven is here and this is going to be a bottle of two teams that love to blow leads. The Detroit Lions and Atlanta Falcons have blown multiple 10 point leads this year and seem to find defeat in the jaws of victory. Although this may cause both fan bases to have near heart attacks every Sunday, this should make for a nonstop action game. So without further ado, here are my Detroit Lions week seven five players to watch.
1. QB Matthew Stafford
Stafford has been showing some inconsistency this year but he is coming off his best game of the year last week and he worked on his footwork and arm angles to put himself in a better position to make the play last week and it showed. Stafford made a couple of plays on the round as well and has shown he is not gunshy about that after getting injured on a scramble last year that caused him to miss eight games and end his season prematurely.
2. WR Kenny Golladay
Golladay should have another breakout game of at least 100 yards and a touchdown vs the Falcons on Sunday. The Falcons have the leagues worst pass defense giving up over 330 yards per game in the air and Golladay himself is catching fire as one of the only players on the Lions offense that is being productive.
The Lions have some big names at wide receiver that have been turned into ghost this year such as Marvin Jones Jr. and Danny Amendola. Those two combine this season for 26 receptions for 354 yards and one touchdown this season in five games. Last year in the first five games those two combined for 40 receptions for 546 yards and two touchdowns. These two are both getting older and in the last year of their contracts. If they want to get an extension they need to earn it and step up to give Golladay a running mate on the other end.
3. RB D’Andre Swift
Swift is coming off a monster game last week vs the Jaguars. He was the first Lions running back to have over 100 yards rushing and two scores on the ground since 2011 Kevin Smith. He was also the first rookie to accomplish that feat since Barry Sanders himself. The Falcons are weak vs the pass and Swift is the Lions best receiving back on the roster. I look for him to have a solid receiving game due to his talent, the Falcons weak defense, as well as the Lions lack of options on offense as listed above.
4. Jamie Collins
Collins was Lion’s highest-rated defensive players last week by PFF with an impressive 89. He helped the Lions prevent the Jaguars from having a run game and only allowing 44 yards while collecting seven tackles.
Collins has also done well in his pass coverage this year showing Lions fans what it’s like to have an actual NFL linebacker on the team, possibly for the first time since Deandre Levy.
5. S Tracey Walker III
Walker has been the Lions best defensive back as predicted so far this year. He leads the team once again in tackles and is second on the team in passes broken up with four. Walker will need to keep the deep ball away from both Julio Jones and Calvin Ridley. Both of these receivers have what it takes to take over a game and whoever is covering them will need help over the top, which is where Walker comes into play.
Both Jones and Ridley are averaging about 90 yards per game and with the Lions still missing Justin Coleman, and Desmond Trufant both of their starting corners. The task at hand is left to rookie Jeff Okudah and sophomore Amani Oruwariye. These two have played fairly well in the absences on the starters but this is a tall task for and cornerback duo in the league.
With as much firepower as the Falcons have on offense between their ground game and their air-raid style offense I don’t know if the Lions can keep pace with them. The Lions will have the better defense of the two teams, but their offense has been slacking this season compared to what the potential of this team can be. My heart tells me the Lions as the Falcons are 1-5 for a reason but the Lions are only 2-3 in their own respect. My brain is saying the Lions young corners can’t keep up with the passing attack the Falcons have put on display this year. With all this being said I am going to go with the Lions to squeak out a win 28-27. So far this year just like the Lions I am 2-3 in my predictions this year.