In the realm of American football, particularly during the regular season and the postseason, securing the home-field advantage is the ultimate goal. Even as we approach week eight of the season, the statistics tell a compelling story: the Detroit Lions must leave no stone unturned in their quest to claim the top seed in the NFC and the coveted home-field advantage.
When we delve into the numbers, it becomes irrefutable that playing at home significantly impacts the Lions’ offensive performance. Quarterback Jared Goff, once part of a significant trade that brought him to Detroit as an asset, has experienced a career resurgence. Credit goes to offensive coordinator Ben Johnson, who has played a pivotal role in Goff’s transformation and is now a top head coaching candidate for the upcoming offseason. However, a closer inspection reveals a marked difference in Goff’s performance at home compared to on the road.
As previously mentioned, Goff has now participated in 24 games for the Lions, and the results are striking. He boasts a three-to-one touchdown differential between home and away games. While there may be occasional exceptions, the overall body of work speaks for itself.
The prospect of the Lions playing crucial, high-stakes playoff games on the road is a cause for concern. Despite a recent loss to the Ravens in a lopsided match, the Lions have demonstrated their ability to take on tough NFL competition. However, they cannot solely rely on their defense to bail them out. Goff must take the reins and secure victories on the road, not merely manage the games. Avoiding turnovers is important, but taking calculated risks that lead to game-changing plays is equally essential. Coach Johnson and his strategic schemes will provide support, but Goff must take an active role in setting himself up for success.
Goff’s next opportunity to prove himself on the road will come after a bye week when the Lions face the Chargers.