The Lions lost their fifth straight game on Sunday Night Football against the Green Bay Packers. Despite leading early and heading into halftime with a lead, Detroit fell apart in the second half and fell to 4-9 on the season.
Arizona also fell to 4-9 on Sunday, but in a much more embarrassing manner. The Cardinals were ousted 58-0 by the Seattle Seahawks in one of the most lopsided victories for any team this season.
Let's take a look at everything you need to know for this matchup.
Where: University of Phoenix Stadium, Glendale, Ariz.
When: Sunday, December 16, 4:05 p.m. ET
Live Stream: NFL.com
Injury Report (via CBS Sports, as of Dec. 12)
Lions: Louis Delmas (unknown, knee), Brandon Pettigrew (unknown, ankle)
Cardinals: Kevin Kolb (unknown, ribs), Ronald Talley (unknown, ankle)
What's at Stake?
As stated before, both of these teams have gone through miserable stretches of the season and have squandered any hopes of making a postseason run.
Being at 4-9, either of these teams could end the season with a respectable record to build hope for next season. But at the same time, they could lose out and get a high draft pick.
At this point, both the Lions and Cardinals are playing for pride and hope for next season.
Lions RB Mikel Leshoure
It's highly possible that Detroit running back Mikel Leshoure is currently the most unknown starting running back in the league this season. But that has no bearing on his fantasy numbers, which will be high yet again against the Cardinals.
Except for not touching the end zone against the Packers, Leshoure has scored in each of his previous three games. Add that to facing a Cardinals defense that ranks 30th in the league against the run, and you have yourself a very favorable matchup.
If Leshoure is on your bench as a flex player, be sure he gets a starting spot this weekend. He'll reach the end zone and rack up a lot of yards.
Lions WR Calvin Johnson
With the way the Cardinals are playing on offense, it's scary to suggest any offensive player on that team will have a solid fantasy week. For that reason, I'm going with Calvin Johnson as a sure start in this matchup.
It's hard to imagine a scenario where Johnson wouldn't be a perennial starter with the season he's had. He reached 1,500 receiving yards in last weekend's loss, and he nearly has 1,000 yards more than the team's second leading receiver.
Things are going so well for Johnson that he might need to consult fellow NFL-er Chris Johnson on stealing his 'CJ2K' nickname on the off chance that Johnson can rack up about 450 yards in the final three games.
What They're Saying
While much of the Twitter world was taking shots and making jokes about Arizona during their 58-0 thrashing last weekend, a familiar name was making suggestions.
@larryfitzgerald you know I can help tell coach.— Vince Young (@VinceYoung) December 9, 2012
Part of me wants to say "you know it's bad when Vince Young reaches out to you," but another part of me (the one that watched the game against Seattle) thinks there might be some conceivable way that Young could give this team any sort of hope.
Key Matchup: John Skelton vs. Lions Defense
It's hard to keep up with where the Cardinals stand with their quarterback situation. Kevin Kolb played well early on but has been hampered with injuries, and John Skelton has been hapless in his relief.
The leash is certainly shorter for Skelton after tossing four interceptions against Seattle, but if he can have success against a scary defense, it will go a long way.
With Ndamukong Suh and Nick Fairley imposing on him, things will be tough for Skelton. But if he can avoid a daunting pass rush and make plays while minimizing interceptions, the Cardinals may have a chance after all.
Things will likely never be as bad for Arizona as they were last Sunday against the Seahawks, but they don't seem to be getting a whole lot better any time soon.
On the other hand, the Lions have tons of playmakers, and while they've struggled to win games lately, they'll be able to generate enough game-changing plays to pull out a victory.
Lions 30, Cardinals 23