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NFL VP of Broadcasting explains why the Lions were chosen to play the Chiefs in Week 1 kickoff

The Detroit Lions are one of the rising stars in the NFL in 2023. The national buzz around the Lions is reaching unexpected heights after the team’s 8-2 finish to 2022.

Detroit is en vogue enough to be selected as the kickoff opponent in the 2023 season opener against the reigning Super Bowl champions, the Kansas City Chiefs. The Lions trip to Kansas City will be the first game of the upcoming season, featured on Thursday Night Football in Week 1.

NFL Vice President of Broadcast Onnie Bose joined the Dan Patrick Show on Thursday to talk about a number of schedule-related issues, including the decision to pit the Lions against the Chiefs as the season-opening feature matchup.

“(The Chiefs) have great home opponents this year,” Bose said. “We could have gone out with a Super Bowl rematch. We could have played Cincinnati, the (AFC) championship rematch. We could have played Buffalo. Any one of those games would have gotten blockbuster numbers. We considered all of them. They’ve got great divisional matchups. The AFC West always matters. The Chargers play great primetime games against the Chiefs. So we left ourselves open-minded.”

Bose continued,

“There are years where we say, ‘This is the one game we’re going to play on kickoff. This year, we kind of said, ‘There are a lot of games that we’ve got to consider.’ And as we went through the process, the Lions were one of those teams that we left in there. And we really like the narrative around that time, the culture that they’re building there. The way they finished their season, eight wins out of their last nine of ten games. The last time we saw them on national television was the last game, game 272 of the regular season, and they were beating the Packers in Lambeau to keep Aaron Rodgers out of the playoffs. We really like that. There is a lot of energy there and we feel really good about starting the season with that energy against the Super Bowl champs.”

Thanks to Charles Goldman of Chiefs Wire for the interview transcription, used with permission!

Story originally appeared on Lions Wire