Last Friday night, the Lions put the hurt on the Cincinnati Bengals, beating them by a final score of 34-3. Being an avid Lions fan and watching them be the NFL "Celler Dwellers," it is hard to not get excited about that showing.
On the other hand, being a rational human being, I know that I should not book my Super Bowl tickets based on a preseason game one win.
There has been a lot of hype about the Lions so far this year and for good reason. The front office finally has a plan and the team appears to be headed in the right direction. They are oozing with young talent and have some veteran leaders as well. They are definitely a team on the rise.
Even with all of the talk about how good the Lions are on paper, fans should not get overly excited about this win against the Bengals, and here are a few reasons why.
The first reason is the Lions rushing game, or lack thereof, that was displayed in this win. The Lions managed a measly 70 yards on 33 carries, good for a 2.1 yards per carry average. It is not like they were not trying to run the ball.
They jumped to an early lead and tried to utilize their backs but it just did not happen. I know they were without Mikel Leshoure, but they better get used to that for the rest of this year.
In order for the Lions to have a successful season, they have to find a balance between their rushing and passing attacks.
Their passing offense proves to be one of the best in the league (on paper at least) but the most effective teams year in and year out are balanced offensively. They must find a way to get their ground game going. If they don't, it could be a frustrating year.
The second reason to not get overly excited about this game is because they played the Bengals. No slight on the Bengals, but they are not exactly the most established team in the NFL this year.
It is not like they went out and crushed the Packers, or the Patriots or the Steelers, they beat the Bengals, so we must remember what that means.
The Bengals are a team in moderate disarray. They have a rookie quarterback in Andy Dalton, who is pushing out the incumbent Carson Palmer, who has been a main stay in Cincinnati for quite some time now.
Wait until game three when the Lions face the Patriots, and then we can have a better understanding of how far the Lions have come since their 0-16 season in 2008.
The third and final reason is that this is still preseason, and these games mean absolutely nothing.
Does anyone remember what the Lions preseason record was in the infamous year of 2008? It was 4-0, the exact opposite of their regular season record which turned out to be win less.
I remember watching the Lions that year and getting excited because they had won all of their pre-season games. Then the regular season started, and they just could not win.
I know that this is a different era in Lions football history, but an older and wiser me is much less excited about this win than I otherwise would be. Knowing what can happen after an undefeated preseason allows me to keep a level head when discussing the Lions this year.
Fans should not start talking about how great the Lions looked in their preseason, or others will bring up that exact point that I just made about their 2008 preseason.
Lions fans, please keep a level head when talking about the Lions, they have not done anything to warrant a crown just yet.
Boosting them up will only lead to a major disappointment when the season does not go according to plan, which it rarely, if ever, does.