Detroit Lions Analysis: 5 Requirements Essential to MNF Retribution vs. Chicago

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Detroit Lions Analysis:  5 Requirements Essential to MNF Retribution vs. Chicago
Gregory Shamus/Getty Images

The NFC North showdown between the Chicago Bears and Detroit Lions on Monday Night Football represents Detroit’s first appearance on Monday Night Football in over a decade.

The last Monday Night Football game hosted by the Lions ended horribly with the eventual NFC Champion St. Louis Rams routing Detroit 35-0 in 2001.

Since defeating the 1970 Chicago Bears 28-14 on a Monday Night Football game in its inaugural season, Detroit possesses an 11-13-1 all time Monday night record.

The Lions-Bears rivalry is one of the fiercest and longest standing rivalries in the history of the National Football League.

It’s a rivalry memorialized by spectacular moments and great players. A history that has produced the likes of all-time great running backs Barry Sanders and Walter Payton and revolutionary Hall of Fame linebackers Joe Schmidt and Dick Butkus.

It’s a history, though, that more recently has become shrouded in controversy, adding fuel to an already burning fire.

It was the closing moments of their 2010 Week 1 affair at Soldier Field that is regarded as the origin of “The Calvin Johnson Rule.” In a rule that dictates possession by means of referee interpretation, an apparent game winning reception by Detroit Lions wide receiver Calvin Johnson with 24 seconds remaining in regulation was later rescinded and ruled an incomplete pass.

Detroit went on to fall to the Bears in Chicago in what would have been Detroit’s first opening day victory since 2007.

Poor officiating, though, is a misnomer. Ed Hochuli isn’t to blame for Detroit’s inability to defeat Chicago.

Detroit has failed to beat Chicago in each of the last three regular seasons. In fact, Chicago has been victorious over Detroit in 11 out of their last 13 contests.

Week 5 of the 2011 NFL Regular Season will feature some of the greatest young talent Detroit has put on the field in years. Look for tight end Brandon Pettigrew and middle linebacker DeAndre Levy to have the greatest impact.

Here are 5 requirements Detroit will have to meet to take down their greatest rival.

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