Skip to main content

Lions playing for higher seed in NFC playoffs against Packers

The Detroit Lions have clinched a spot in the postseason, and can secure the No. 5 seed in the NFC playoffs by winning their first game at Lambeau Field since 1991.

The Green Bay Packers have already locked down home-field advantage throughout the NFC playoffs, making Sunday's matchup against the Lions much less meaningful on their final record.

Needless to say, how Packers coach Mike McCarthy treats the game -- and whether or not he rests key starters, including quarterback Aaron Rodgers -- could go a long way toward determining the road the Lions take in the playoffs.

"We're going to play to win the game next week. I'm not real comfortable with a division opponent coming in here and not thinking we're going to play to get win No. 15," McCarthy said, according to the team's official site.

But McCarthy also didn't commit on which players will try to make that happen, adding that the Packers' health heading into the playoffs is a concern.

Lions coach Jim Schwartz wouldn't directly answer if he will rest any players, but made it clear he's more concerned about reaching the playoffs healthy and with momentum.

"(We can't be) worrying about scenarios or all those other things," Schwartz said, according to the team's official site. "They'll have a team for us to play; we'll be ready for them."

But there are playoff implications still in play. With a win (or a loss by the Falcons), the Lions secure the No. 5 seed and a matchup against the winner of the NFC East -- the New York Giants (8-7) or Dallas Cowboys (8-7). The Lions defeated the Cowboys 34-30 in Week 4.

By falling to the No. 6 seed, the Lions would face either the San Francisco 49ers (12-3) or New Orleans Saints (12-3), who have both defeated them this season.

If the Lions can buck the trend and take care of their business, all of the questions will be answered. It's up to the Packers to decide whether or not they lend a hand.

This article has been reproduced in a new format and may be missing content or contain faulty links. Please use the Contact Us link in our site footer to report an issue.