The Detroit Lions have started an NFL season 8-2 for the first time since 1962.
Facing long odds, Dan Campbell's squad rallied late en route to a stunning 31-26 victory against the Chicago Bears.
Training 26-14 with just a little more than four minutes remaining, Detroit rattled off 17 consecutive points to secure a masterful come from behind victory.
After a surprising win, several members of the roster expressed the team has developed a growing camaraderie, having fought through and overcome several hurdles over the course of the last 14 months.
Head coach Dan Campbell acknowledged 61 years was quite a long time ago.
"That’s a long time. It’s a long time, and it’s something that we talked about before the season. Not, ‘Hey let’s get some of the wins before the 1962 season,’ but just let’s make the most of this season," Campbell told reporters. "We got a chance to do something special and let’s take it one week at a time.
"And also every week is different, every opponent is different, every matchup is different, and you just don’t know what all it’s going to take to win against that opponent. Is it going to take a certain play from the defense, a certain style, or special teams or offense? But man, collectively we found a way today. So, look man, it’s great to be 8-2 and we got a big one in about four days. Or five? I don’t know what it is, but it’s coming up.”
Quarterback Jared Goff expressed the little things the Lions do in critical moments have added up, resulting in the ability to execute late and make the plays needed to leave the field with victories instead of losses.
"I think I’ve been on good teams, bad teams, really good teams, really bad teams, and you tend to figure that the good teams are the ones that kind of win those games late, and it’s like you don’t really know why or how but you always make the right play in the fourth quarter," said Goff. "Hutch gets a sack there, we score on the run play as opposed to getting stuffed, like little things keep happening that go your way and it’s a sign of a good team.
"And last week was no different, winning on that field goal, being able to convert on that fourth down, kick a field goal. But, yeah it’s a sign of a good team, and ultimately reflects itself in the record. But it feels good to win another close one and validate what we’ve been working on.”