The 1986Detroit Lions season was their 57th in the league. The team failed to improve upon their previous season's output of 7–9 and missed the playoffs for the third straight year with a 5–11 record. The highlight of the season was first round draft choice Chuck Long’s first pass for a TD.
This season would provide the last occasion the Lions defeated the Eagles until 2012, although the teams did not meet again until the 1995 playoffs and not again in the regular season until 1996. The reason for this long gap is that before the admission of the Texans in 2002, NFL scheduling formulas for games outside a team’s division were much more influenced by table position during the previous season.