Detroit Lions Playoff Odds Looking More Realistic by the Week

The Detroit Lions were one of the most popular NFL teams to bet on this off-season. Unlike past years, however, this was fueled by optimism.

Midway through the 2022-2023 season, it appeared the Lions we’ve all grown to know were back in full swing as their record was 1-6 with their playoffs dropping off to +1650. 

Since then? Detroit has gone 5-1 with its only blemish being a three-point loss to the Buffalo Bills on Thanksgiving. How are the Detroit Lions‘ playoff odds looking with just four games remaining? Could they claw their way into their first postseason appearance since 2016?

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Detroit Lions Playoff Odds

The following list shows the Detroit Lions’ playoff odds across four of the top Michigan online sportsbooks, as of Dec. 13.

Heading into Week 15, the Detroit Lions are “On The Bubble” according to the playoff picture, with the Seattle Seahawks ahead of them and two NFC East teams — the Washington Commanders and New York Giants — as the sixth and seventh seeds.

According to FiveThirtyEight, the Lions have a 20% chance of making the playoffs as of today. If in Week 15, the Lions, Commanders, and San Francisco 49ers all win, Detroit’s chances bump up to 42%.

We can get an implied probability for a Lions playoff run by using the Lions’ sportsbook odds. By converting their longest and shortest odds at +300 and +240, this comes out to implied probabilities of 25% and 29.41%, respectively.

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Detroit Lions Remaining Schedule

Here are the Detroit Lions’ final four opponents to close out the 2022-2023 regular season:

  • at New York Jets
  • at Carolina Panthers
  • vs Chicago Bears
  • at Green Bay Packers

Using FiveThirtyEight’s game selector, we can get playoff chances for how the rest of their season plays out.

  • 4-0 record: 91%
  • 3-1 record with a Jets loss: 43%
  • 3-1 record with a Packers loss: 36%
  • 2-2 record with losses to NYJ and GB: 3%

At the bare minimum, the Lions need to go 3-1 to have any inkling of hope of making the playoffs. Detroit’s chances increase into the 60 to 70% range if teams like the Giants or Seahawks falter down the stretch.

This is certainly possible, as both teams have struggled in recent weeks. After starting the season 6-1, the Giants are 1-4-1 in their last six. On top of that, the G-men have a difficult end to their season with games against Washington, Minnesota, Indianapolis, and Philadelphia.

Seattle has been on a similar path to the Giants. The Seahawks are 1-3 in their last four games with San Francisco, Kansas City, New York Jets, and Los Angeles Rams.

Regardless of how this season ends, Lions fans can finally have non-delusional hope for the future. In addition to strong performances on the field, Detroit has been collecting extra draft capital. As it stands today, the Lions have five picks in the first three rounds of the 2023 NFL Draft, including two each in rounds one and two.

Thanks to the Jared Goff-Matthew Stafford trade, the Lions hold the Los Angeles Rams’ first rounder which looks like it will be a premium selection. If the draft were held today, Detroit would be selecting fourth overall using the Rams’ pick.

AP Photo/Paul Sancya

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