Smith stands by his prediction
Kevin Smith isn't backing down from the prediction he made on his blog last week that the Lions will make the playoffs this fall.
Coming off the NFL's first ever 0-16 season, that seems like a long shot. But Smith, between tosses at the Lions' annual bocce ball tournament Wednesday, said everything he's seen this offseason leads him to believe a dramatic turnaround is coming.
It's a new attitude, we got new players, we got Pro Bowlers, we got guys who won Super Bowls, Smith said. All those things count, no matter what anybody else thinks. That's the confidence that you're supposed to have. I didn't predict any wins, I didn't say we're going to win this amount of games. My whole point was we're good enough to get to the playoffs, and if we get to the playoffs anything can happen.
Smith, who lost six pounds this offseason in an effort to get faster for the new offense, said he didn't understand why his online prediction made headlines last week.
On his official website, Smith34.com, Smith wrote we will definitely make the playoffs this season and believe it or not we weren't far off last year.
The Lions allowed the second most points in NFL history last year and had the worst offense in the NFC. They lost by an average of 15.6 points per game, but squandered early leads late in the season against Tampa Bay, Carolina and Minnesota.
We should have won a bunch of games, Smith said. Tampa Bay, Carolina, we weren't that far from the Saints. We lost to the Vikings, 12-10. Plenty of games. The only team that came up and put up so many points so fast we couldn't catch up was Tennessee. Besides that one game against the Packers, we threw three interceptions in four minutes late in the game. I wasn't lying, I was just telling the truth.
Smith said he's prepared for any flack that comes as a result of his prediction, but promised when we make the playoffs we're going to lift this city up.
Former Lions quarterback Jon Kitna made headlines each of the last two years when he said he expected the Lions to win 10 games. With three wins this season, they'll finally get there.
I didn't say we're going to the Super Bowl, I didn't say we're going to win the Super Bowl, I said we're going to the playoffs, Smith said. That's just my personal opinion and if anybody on my blog doesn't like it, don't go on my website.
Are we good enough right now? No, but the way we're working we'll be good enough. But I don't think anybody's good enough at this point, at OTAs. But the way we're working and the consistency that we have, we're working for the playoffs.