Five questions with Pride of Detroit

Joe Sargent

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Detroit Lions face off on Sunday. We talked to Pride of Detroit's Sean Yuille about the game.

1. The Lions offense seems to have struggled to find any targets beyond Calvin Johnson. With Darrelle Revis likely to cover Johnson, where will the Lions turn -- or will they stick with Megatron?

Megatron will definitely still get his targets. Even with Revis following him around, the Lions can't let Johnson completely disappear from their game plan. He's too talented to let that happen, and there just isn't enough talent around him to get away with that (as the second half against the Steelers showed us last week -- Johnson had 0 catches and only a couple targets).

That said, the Lions have gotten pretty good contributions from Kris Durham as of late. He has emerged as the Lions' No. 2 receiver, although Nate Burleson should be back from a broken arm this week and is likely to take back that role. Tight end Brandon Pettigrew has also gotten a lot of targets as of late, and he seems to have been able to move past his issues with drops and fumbles (knock on wood). The Lions also use their running backs in the passing game quite a bit, so expect Reggie Bush to see several targets on Sunday.

2. The NFC's pretty crowded right now and the Lions are involved in a pretty tight race in the NFC North. Can you make it to the playoffs this year?

The wild card has become a much more difficult route to the playoffs in the last few weeks with so many teams in the mix. However, the injury to Aaron Rodgers has opened the door for the Lions to win their first ever division title since it became the NFC North. Nobody really expected that to be a possibility going into the season, and even a month ago it looked like wild card or bust. Now, though, it may actually be NFC North title or bust. This is probably the best chance they will get to win the division and get a home playoff game, and the talent is in place for them to pull it off.

3. How do Lions fans feel about Jim Schwartz? His tenure hasn't exactly been steady, though he's had a lot more success than most recent Lions coaches.

Schwartz was on top of the world after he led the Lions to the playoffs in 2011. His antics on the sideline (fist pumps, jawing with opponents, etc.) were viewed in a positive light by most, and the Lions' so-called discipline issues weren't seen as a huge issue. That all changed in 2012. The team was awful on the field and had lots of issues off it, and many fans wanted Schwartz gone after the Lions went 4-12.

Schwartz ended up sticking around, and even though the Lions are currently tied for first in the NFC North, there are a lot of mixed feelings about him. His fake field goal call that completely backfired last week in Pittsburgh drew a lot of criticism, and the final six games of this season will really make or break his tenure in Detroit. If he leads the Lions to an NFC North title or at least a playoff berth, I'm sure he'll be back next year. If he doesn't, though, it wouldn't shock me if the Lions decide it's time for a change. With the talent they have, it's certainly playoffs or bust in the eyes of fans.

4. Reggie Bush never turned into a featured back in New Orleans, but he seems to be doing alright in Detroit. Why has Bush done so well for the Lions?

Bush and the Lions are just a perfect match for each other. Bush's skills as a running back fit perfectly in this offense, which almost seems like it was designed with him in mind. His play-making ability takes some of the attention of opposing defenses away from Calvin Johnson, and it adds a threat that the Lions were without last year when Jahvid Best was unable to get cleared to return from a concussion. Bush has been solid in the ground game, and he's proven to be a threat to score in the passing game as well on screens. He's not someone you necessarily want to build your offense around, but he's the perfect running back for an offense that is headlined by Matthew Stafford and Megatron.

5. Care to offer a prediction for the game?

It's pretty clear at this point that the Bucs are a better team than their record suggests, and after laying an egg in Pittsburgh last week, it wouldn't shock me if the Lions get upset this week, especially with Green Bay coming to town only four days later. However, I do think the Lions will come away victorious. Let's go with 24-20 as the final score.

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