DETROIT – The Detroit Lions were pounded by the Indianapolis Colts at Ford Field between 41-21 on Sunday. Detroit is now 3-4 in the season, with a trip to Minnesota next. Our Lions performance scores are as follows:
Matthew Stafford had one of his worst starts in the recent past. He flipped the ball twice, including a brutal pick-6 in the opening game of a fourth quarter ride. Stafford was fumbling a quarter earlier when Colt’s linebacker Darius Leonard notched the strip sack.
It wasn’t just sales, either. Stafford was unpredictable on Sunday. He pounced TJ Hockenson on one early deep look and another for Kenny Golladay before the half. The quarterback was under pressure throughout the game, picked up five sacks and kept moving from start to finish.
Stafford escaped the pressure and scored a nice 73-yard deep shot for Marvin Hall in the fourth quarter. That was a 4-yard touchdown pass for Marvin Jones, but it was too little, too late. Stafford finished 24 of 42 passes for 336 yards and three touchdowns with one pick. Note: D.
Jamal Agnew and Matthew Stafford were the leading opponents against Indy’s strong defense. Agnew ran once for 11 yards and Stafford started once for 10 yards.
Adrian Peterson ran five times for 7 yards. It was 7 meters long and ended at 7 meters. If you think that’s bad, D’Andre Swift ran six times for 1 yard. He had a long attempt at attack from 5 meters. The Lions were undoubtedly unable to get into a rhythm, but that was terrible. Kerryon Johnson didn’t get a carry for the second straight week but caught two passes for 15 yards and a score. The Colts competed with one of the best defenses no matter how you slice them, but this was a nightmare-inducing show. Blocking Detroit certainly didn’t help against this tough group. But Swift and Peterson lacked something that resembled explosiveness or evasive maneuvers. Note: F.
Kenny Golladay was held on to four targets without a catch before being eliminated with a hip injury. Golladay dropped one and Stafford missed him in the first half with another. Marvin Jones had two touchdowns, the first giving the Lions an early lead. Jones ran a nice crosser, hit his man on point and made Stafford’s life easier. He later got a 4 yard touchdown in what could be considered trash. Marvin Hall ran 73 yards from Stafford under a beauty boost in the fourth quarter. Hall ended up with four catches on seven targets for 113 yards. Danny Amendola took a formidable move to convert to third and fifth, catching three passes for 54 yards.
Stafford was absent and the game was mundane when the offensive was on. It’s hard to give credit to this group, but it’s certainly not their fault. Grade: C-
TJ Hockenson had Stafford’s eyes from the first whistle to the last horn. He led the team by 10 targets and caught seven passes for 65 yards. Stafford overturned him early, which would have been a significant win. Hockenson got his hands on it, but it was a tough catch nonetheless.
Isaac Nauta saw a few repetitions in pass protection, and Jesse James made the most of his one look. James had a catch for 23 yards and flashed some catch ability for what feels like first time in Detroit. Grade: C +
The Lions had been looking pretty solid on the offensive line for a couple of weeks and started the same group from the gates as well. That changed on Sunday, as did the starting grid.
Joe Dahl slipped in on the right, pushing Halapoulivaati Vaitai to the right and Tyrell Crosby out of the starting rotation. It’s worth remembering the left tackle. Taylor Decker struggled with a shoulder injury and Crosby has proven he can handle both tackle spots. Vaitai eventually left the team with a foot injury. His first season in Detroit continued on a disastrous path after signing the $ 45 million free agent deal. Stafford was fired five times and kept on the move throughout the game. Oh, and Swift and Peterson combined for 8 yards on 11 stretches. Not good. Note: F.
Line of defense
Call me crazy, but I have a feeling that Detroit’s line of defense is fine. Romeo Okwara picked up another sack, his fifth this season. Trey Flowers continues to show this all-round ability and loses cover to catch a glimpse of Colt’s tight end, Mo Alie-Cox. Danny Shelton had a big sack in third place who was recalled for a personal foul. Referee Clay Martin said Shelton continued defending the call after the game after the whistle.
The Colts didn’t dominate the ground either. Jordan Wilkins ran for 89 yards 20 times. Jonathan Taylor was bottled with 11 porters for 22 yards. While Nyheim Hines was a problem in passing, he was held in check on the ground and went eight yards with five runs. The defense also lost in a 4-1 and a direct hit against Trey Burton on the goal line, with the game hanging by the hair of a hair. Note: C.
Jamie Collins stuffed the boxing score, collected 10 tackles and fell on the blocked punt. He was the bright spot for the linebacker room, but this group operated on the Colts with a single lightbulb.
Jahlani Tavai’s feet were stuck in the middle of the field with Hines’ 22-yard touchdown catch in the second quarter. He was recovering slowly, and Hines was able to sneak past security. Philip Rivers ate the flats and center of the field alive, connecting with 11 different players without looking down much, if at all. Note: D.
Rivers chose this secondary with delayed routes from the back field, crossing routes and landfills in the apartments. The Colts tossed it to 11 different players after top receiver TY Hilton was injured and the offensive showed no sign of slowing.
Lions Safety Tracy Walker was knocked out of the way in the 7 yard touchdown catch by Jack Doyle. Walker was later overdone on Hines’ second touchdown on a perfect throw from Rivers. Justin Coleman was called on a pass interference call that was the last nail in the coffin in his first second leg from injured reserves, so it was almost all bad on Sunday. Note: F.
Jack Fox remains very good at what he does despite taking a few snapshots. The first of those bad snaps even appeared to have brushed the lawn, but Fox still started it 55 yards. Fox was busy with five punts, averaging 46.0 net yards per attempt.
Miles Killebrew blocked a boat to give Detroit the ball in excellent field position. The Lions scored a 7-0 lead over the big game two games later. There were some mistakes, however, when Tony McRae met the returnees before the boat landed. There may have been a pressure in the back, but it’s hard not to mention it in this situation. Matt Prater missed another field goal attempt and it was from less than 50 meters away. Detroit’s offensive came to the field position late in the first half, but Prater failed to knock it down and continued its sloppy start into the first half of the season. Grade B
There was something about this loss Really felt like a new low for this regime. Indianapolis is a solid team with a strong, well-rounded defense. No arguments, but Detroit’s offensive attack was mundane and predictable and couldn’t get its defense off the field, a recipe for a long Sunday. The Lions keep going run down first to a dizzying degree, To give yourself a fair share of third-and-longs in the first half of the year. Even when things didn’t work or showed signs of improvement, Detroit kept sending Swift or Peterson into a wall of pain without much movement or changing things to get those defenses off their toes, if only for a second.
The Lions failed to convert to Third-and-9, Third-and-10, Third-and-10, and Third-and-13 in the first half. That’s not the worst ride either. That’s how four of six first-half series ended for offense. Even so, it should come as no surprise that the offense was struggling in this case. The Colts are well rounded and well trained on defense and this strong group has put the brackets down. Indy’s offense? That’s a different story.
Philip Rivers seems unable to throw the ball into the field at this stage in his career. Even so, it didn’t matter as he made sure to take advantage of Detroit’s gentle cover by taking the ball to his playmakers in space. Nyheim Hines made this group look pathetic on his two touchdown catches. The Colts even returned to the Well, choosing a direct touchdown to end Trey Burton and get rid of him for good. It was a rerun of Indy’s last game, and the Lions weren’t ready with their lives for it. It’s hard to feel optimistic or see the light at the end of the tunnel. The same problems keep creeping in. More disturbing than anything else, that defense is said to be the lifeblood of this franchise, allowing more than 35 points for the third time in seven games. Note: F.
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