This season is going to be the first for new Lions head coach Dan Campbell and general manager Brad Holms. They did a ton of work to this roster in their short time on staff such as trading away franchise QB Matthew Stafford. New QB in town Jared Goff will take over and have a tall order in front of him as the Lions have also lost their starting three wide receivers. On a positive note, the Lions pro-bowl TE is returning in TJ Hockenson. Now I would like to break down the Detroit Lions 2021 schedule to see how this team may fare in the regular season.
Detroit Lions 2021 Schedule: First Half
Week One | 9/12/21 | San Francisco 49ers at Detroit Lions
Detroit opens its’ year at home and takes on the San Francisco 49ers. They may get a look at the number three overall pick in Trey Lance if the 49ers throw him into the fire that is the NFL. Of course, the Lions will debut their new quarterback in Jared Goff and hope their new defensive scheme along their revamped defensive line can hold the 49ers at bay.
Prediction: Lions win 24-21
Week Two | 9/20/21 | Detroit Lions at Green Bay Packers
The two games against the Green Bay Packers are by far the hardest to predict this far out. I am assuming that Aaron Rodgers is staying with the team until there is official news saying he is not. With that being said, the Packers just have more firepower than the Lions do at this point.
Prediction: Packers wins 28-21
Week Three | 9/26/21 | Baltimore Ravens at Detroit Lions
The Ravens are a different breed of a team compared to the Lions at this stage in their development. This may be the second-biggest blowout of the season for the Lions, at least it comes early on and we can all move on from it.
Prediction: Ravens win 31-17
Week Four | 10/3/21 | Detroit Lions at Chicago Bears
The Chicago Bears claim to be starting Andy Dalton for the season to give time for the rookie Justin Fields to get some training on the sidelines. By week four I don’t think they can still have Dalton starting but if they do this one goes to the Lions. That Bears offense is not scary to the Lions’ revamped defense.
Prediction: Lions win 17-10
Week Five | 10/10/21 | Detroit Lions at Minnesota Vikings
The Lions and Vikings should put on a good show with the Vikings edging out the win. The Lions lack star power in their back seven and Justin Jefferson is going to be more than a handful for the young DB core of the Lions.
Prediction: Vikings win 31-28
Week Six | 10/17/21 | Cincinnati Bengals at Detroit Lions
The Bengals bring in last year’s #1 overall pick in Joe Burrow to Ford Field. The Lions will have a hard time stopping him and his new-old weapon in Ja’Marr Chase, who the Bengals drafted while allowing Penei Sewell to fall to the Lions in a move many criticized. It is impossible to compare a tackle to a receiver but with will be nice to see them both on the same field.
Prediction: Lions win 21-17
Week Seven | 10/24/21 | Detroit Lions at Los Angeles Rams
Goff/Stafford revenge game. The Rams are built to win now and the Lions are trading players away for future draft capital to rebuild this roster. This is the biggest mismatch in my opinion in the entire NFL season. The Rams win big and the Lions roll on to the next week.
Prediction: Rams win 31-17
Week Eight | 10/31/21 | Philadelphia Eagles at Detroit Lions
The Eagles may be the most winnable game for the Lions besides the Bengals game. Vegas has the Eagles as a pick-em at the moment and is the only game on their schedule that Vegas does not have the Lions losing outright. The Lions have the QB advantage in this one as long as no injuries happen.
Prediction: Lions win 17-14
Week Nine | Bye Week
Detroit Lions 2021 Schedule: Second Half
Week Ten | 11/14/21 | Detroit Lions at Pittsburgh Steelers
The Lions go on the road after their bye week and head to Pittsburgh and even though they are not as formattable as they once were the Steelers have what it takes to get past the Lions due to their pass-heavy attack on offense.
Prediction: Steelers win 17-14
Week Eleven | 11/21/21 | Detroit Lions at Cleveland Browns
The Browns running attack with Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt are no match for the Lions’ defense even after the revamped new defensive line. The Lions struggled vs the run last year and although they worked hard on that this off-season the Browns will simply overpower them.
Prediction: Browns win 31-24
Week Twelve | 11/25/21 | Chicago Bears at Detroit Lions
Lions host the Bears and at this point in the season there is no chance the Bears are still running with Dalton at QB and Fields will take over and play well enough to bring home the win for the Bears. The Lions will not rue the day they passed on Fields but for an afternoon may have to ask themselves what if.
Prediction: Bears win 21-14
Week Thirteen |12/5/21 |Minnesota Vikings at Detroit Lions
Vikings will do the same thing as their previous matchup with the Lions, rely on Jefferson and company to slice and dice the Lions’ defense. I don’t think the Lions are completely out of this one but at the end of the day, I see the Vikings winning this one as well.
Prediction: Vikings win 21-17
Week Fourteen | 12/12/21 | Detroit Lions at Denver Broncos
Denver has all the tools in place they need to be successful besides their QB. If Drew Lock can find a new gear this year the Lions will be in trouble but if he is as advertised the Lions can come out of this one with the win. Goff is the much better QB of the two and any team that has the QB advantage in a game is never out of it.
Prediction: Lions win 17-10
Week Fifteen | 12/19/21 | Arizona Cardinals at Detroit Lions
In their yearly matchup, the Lions will host the Cardinals for what seems like the 10th year in a row. These two always have some close games but seems to be at the end of the game who wants it less as both teams tend to play sloppy at the end of the game. With the Lions having a better coaching staff than the previous season that may be enough to slant the pick in the Lions’ favor. However with Deandre Hopkins being able to take over any game he chooses and the Lions intercepting a pass that was going to him last year by then Lions rookie Jeff Okudah. Hopkins may have some extra motivation going into this one.
Prediction: Cardinals win 28-27
Week Sixteen | 12/26/21 | Detroit Lions at Atlanta Falcons
In the rematch of the epic comeback from last season, the Falcons will host the Lions in a battle of the top ten pick tight ends. TJ Hockenson for the Lions who is coming off a pro-bowl second year, vs the rookie Kyle Pitts who is the highest TE taken in recent history. With the other weapons the Falcons have at their disposal I don’t see how the Lions’ young secondary can keep them out of the endzone for long.
Prediction: Falcons win 28-21
Week Seventeen | 1/2/22 | Detroit Lions at Seattle Seahawks
Any team will struggle going into Seattle. Not to sound like a broken record but the Lions are rebuilding and the Seahawks have a top-five QB and two top 15 WRs. Once again just too much for the Lions to handle.
Prediction: Seahawks win 31-21
Week Eighteen | 1/9/22 | Green Bay Packers at Detroit Lions
The Lions host the rival Packers to close out the year in Detroit. Pending on the Rodgers situation this time being is he resting for the playoffs or playing in this game I see it as a toss up. The Lions often win these late games in the year.
Prediction: Lions win 21-17
If everything goes similar to these predictions, the Lions will end the year with a 6-11 record. More than they ended with last year but still have plenty of work to do. The Lions have the Rams’ first-round pick as well as their own and will put themselves in a position to compete for the division in 2022.
Thanks for reading my Detroit Lions 2021 schedule predictions! For more NFL content follow me @Gullett_James and @OTH_Football.