Detroit Lions: Playoff Bound In 2011-2012?

John MatheosContributor IIJanuary 15, 2011

DETROIT, MI - JANUARY 02:  Maurice Morris #28 of the Detroit Lions gets in for a fouth quarter touchdown in front of Jamarca Sanford #33 of the Minnesota Vikings at Ford Field on January 2, 2011 in Detroit, Michigan. Detroit won the game 20-13.  (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)
Gregory Shamus/Getty Images

Every NFL team goes through their hardships from time to time. Many take years to develop and some never evolve.

The Detroit Lions have gone through some extensive tough times. The Lions haven't been a winning team since the year 2000, when they went 9-7.  They went 0-16 in 2008 and faced a lot of scrutiny from fans in the Detroit area.

But the times are changing; better yet, I see growth within this organization. There's a tremendous new roar rattling the streets of Detroit.

Yes, that's right! I've been around football for the past 22 years. I've gone to a few Lions games in Detroit and watched this team slowly develop.

Many may laugh, but I have an eye for talent and chemistry. The Lions have showed some great signs of prosperity this past year.

They went 6-10 and many may see this as another miserable year, but in my opinion, it's the best year the team has seen in the past 10 years. They lost four games by three points or less, which could have made them 10-6 and possibly given them a playoff berth.

Superstar quarterback Matthew Stafford suffered a major injury at the beginning of the season, which placed the team in a severe handicap the rest of the way.

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Rookie sensation Ndamukong Suh proved that he is a true stud in the NFL. He recorded 10 sacks in his first season and contributed with one interception. Moreover, rookie running back Jahvid Best compiled 1000 yards rushing and receiving.

Brandon Pettigrew, the big tight end, had a tremendous season. He had 71 receptions and four touchdowns.

Anyhow, I guess you see my point. The Lions are on the rise. Playoffs are the next step. The city of Detroit deserves it. If everything goes as planned, I see the Lions being a dominant force in the years to come.

My next year's prediction for the Lions is 11-5 and a wild card position.

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