ALLEN PARK, Mich. -- One thing is definitely known about the Detroit Lions at the midpoint of the 2013 season: As long as Calvin Johnson, Matthew Stafford and Reggie Bush are healthy and on the field, they are never out of a game.
The Lions proved that with come-from-behind wins against the Minnesota Vikings, Washington Redskins, Cleveland Browns and Dallas Cowboys. The Lions can put up points and put them up in a hurry. They rank eighth in the league -- averaging 27 points a game -- and are No. 2 in total offense (416 yards a game).
They have also proved that their margins are still very small. They still give up too much on defense (28th in total yards, 25th against the pass and 20th in scoring). They will not survive many games losing the turnover battle, as they did against the Cowboys.
"I mean, we are 5-3 and I don't think there is anything else that you can say other than that," coach Jim Schwartz said. "I don't put grades on it; I don't know if it is a D, an A, a B, a C or an F -- I don't know. It will tell over the course of the year."
The 5-3 start has put them in good position to get, at the least, a wild card spot. They have four road games left, and four of their final six games are at Ford Field.
"There are positives in there. There are negatives in there," Schwartz said. "We just have to keep on working. We are only halfway through the season. The tale of this season is not going to be written in the first half; it is going to be written in the second half."
As the Lions left for their bye last week, they talked about staying focused.
"It's always a good feeling going into the bye with a win, being 5-3, but we can't get too far away from (football)," center Dominic Raiola said. "Get away from it, but don't get too far away from it because we could do something special here and we've just got to keep up what we've been doing."
The Lions return to action Sunday against their NFC North rival Chicago Bears.
"It's a good thing we're coming back with Chicago because we know those guys and got a feel for their personnel," defensive end Willie Young said. "They could change up the scheme, but at the end of the day, it's going to be the same guys trying to execute what they're doing."
---Wide receiver Ryan Broyles' season is over. Broyles had surgery last week to repair a ruptured Achilles tendon, an injury he sustained in a non-contract play in the third quarter against Dallas. "It's tough," coach Jim Schwartz said. "It's two, now three years in a row that he's had a season-ending injury. It's not easy to come back from but he's a tough guy. If anybody can come back from it, he can." Broyles' last season at Oklahoma ended with a torn ACL. He tore his other ACL in Week 13 last season. The Achilles was ruptured as he was allowing a punt to sail over his head. He made a slight move and the Achilles ruptured.