The Detroit Lions will open the season closing in on a piece of history they already hold, something they don’t want to experience again.
The Lions open the season Sunday at Soldier Field in Chicago with a 20-game road losing streak. It’s just four shy of the NFL record held by the Lions from not long ago. The Lions dropped 24 straight in a wicked stretch from 2001 through 2003.
One thing they have going for them is they’re going to face the Bears and the last time the Lions won away from Ford Field was Oct. 28, 2007, at Soldier Field. The 16-7 victory was punctuated by four interceptions of Bears quarterback Brian Griese, three of them in the end zone.
So is it weighing on the players in Motown as they prepare to fly over Lake Michigan on Saturday?
“If you polled half of our team they would have no idea how long that losing streak is and everything else,” Lions coach Jim Schwartz said.
“We brought in a lot of veteran players here that have won a lot of football games on the road and at home, guys like Kyle Vanden Bosch and Nate Burelson, Corey Williams. We added a lot of players that were drafted, Ndamukong Suh, Jahvid Best, so we can't hold those guys accountable for what has happened in the past.
“We haven't been a good road team the last couple years. We haven't been a good team the last couple of years. We haven't won very many games at home either. You win on the road in this league by having good players, having a good scheme, coaching them well and playing good on Sundays.
“You don't win because you take the train or take a plane or know how to pack a suitcase or know how to check into a hotel room. Winning on the road in the NFL is a result of having good players who are coached well and I like where we are there.”
Here are some other wretched road streaks:
23 Houston Oilers 1981-84
22 Buffalo Bills 1983-86
19 Atlanta Falcons 1988-91
19 Tampa Bay Buccaneers 1983-85
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