NFL: The Five Biggest Plays in the Lions Season

Detroit Lions Sport News


  • The Detroit Lions will host the LA Rams Sunday at 8:15 p.m. at Ford Field in the Wild Card Round of the NFL Playoffs. The Lions are early three-point favorites at Michigan sportsbooks.
  • Detroit finished the season 12-5 and won the NFC North title for the first time.
  • We look back at the five biggest plays for the Lions in the regular season.

It’s playoff football time in Michigan.

After sweeping away the Vikings again in Week 18, the Lions found out Sunday night that their first opponent on their way to the Super Bowl is the Los Angeles Rams. The sixth-seeded Rams feature former Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford. The game has been given the marquee Sunday night slot on NBC.

It’s an amazing time to be a Lions fan at the best Michigan sportsbooks. FanDuel and BetMGM will have plenty of props and markets open all throughout the Lions playoff run. The Lions finished 12-5 against the spread this season.

To get us started for the playoffs, here’s a look back at the five most important plays of the Lions regular season.

5. Living it Up in LA 

The Lions took down the LA Chargers 41-38 in Week 11 on a last-second field goal by Riley Patterson. The field goal was set up by a fourth-and-2 pass from Jared Goff to rookie sensation Sam LaPorta. Goff had his second best game of the year - yardage wise - with 333.

It was the Lions only walk-off win of the season and showed coach Dan Campbell’s guts to go for it. Unfortunately, Patterson would be cut a few weeks later after a bad performance and replaced by Michael Badgely.

4. A Rally against Chicago 

This still may be my favorite Lions game of the year. The Bears led Detroit 26-14 with under five minutes to play, when the Lions scored two touchdowns and a safety to win it. Aidan Hutchinson’s sack/fumble on Bears QB Justin Fields for the game-clinching safety capped the comeback.

3. Chopping the Chiefs 

Campbell’s gutsiest gamble of the 2023 may have been his first. It was the Lions second possession of the entire season and they had the ball backed up at their own 17 yard line looking at fourth-and-2.

The Lions lined up to punt, but sent a short snap to Jalen Reeves-Maybin who surged ahead for a first down. Honestly, the Chiefs played it well. But the tone

2. Ifeatu’s Interception 

The Lions biggest win of the year was in Week 16 in Minnesota when they clinched their first NFC North title. It wasn’t settled though until Ifeatu Melifonwu’s interception of Nick Mullens over the middle with under a minute to play.

It was the fourth pick of the game for the Lions that afternoon.

1. Reporting As Eligible 

The biggest play of the Lions season didn’t go their way, but is it the most impactful. The Lions converted a two-point conversion against the Cowboys to take a 21-20 lead throwing a pass to lineman Taylor Decker, but officials said that Dan Skipper was the player who reported, not Decker and threw a flag negating the play.

Had the play stood, the Lions would be the 2 seed in the playoffs, not the three, and if they win their wild card game, they’d be home for Round 2. Campbell and the Lions made the Ford Field crowd erupt Sunday throwing a pass to Decker in the third quarter. The Lions were tweaking the officials and the NFL.

Born and raised in Louisiana, Darren Cooper has a fond appreciation for bayous, Mardi Gras beads and the sports betting industry. Darren has worked for multiple print and online publications since 1998, primarily as a sports columnist in the Northeast. He’s covered a Super Bowl (it was a blowout), the World Series (same) and the NBA Draft (man, those guys are tall). For the last few years he’s dug deep into the sports gambling industry as it exploded across America, learning how the legal sausage is made and how while all the sportsbooks look the same, they all have different identities and styles. He’s learned to always bet within his means -- and take the under. When not in front of his computer creating, Darren spends time with his three boys. He runs, reads and is always looking for the next big thing to write about.