Detroit Lions News
11-23-15: The coaching and management changes for the Lions seemed to have breathed life into the season, winning their second consecutive game this past Sunday against the Oakland Raiders. Detroit will kick off the action on Thanksgiving Day as they host the Mark Sanchez-led Philadelphia Eagles.
11-16-15: It hasn’t been a successful season for the 2-7 Detroit Lions, but a win against the Green Bay Packers takes some of the sting away. The coaching changes seem to have had a positive effect for the time being, as the Lions will try and make it two in a row against the Oakland Raiders.
11-9-15: After a week off to smooth over changes made in the front office and on the sidelines, the Detroit Lions come back into action against their toughest rival within the division. Detroit faces Green Bay at Lambeau Field to try and get their second win of the season.
10-20-15: Coming off their first win of the season, the Detroit Lions begin their upward climb to the postseason with their second consecutive division matchup. This week, the Lions host the Minnesota Vikings for their third consecutive game at Ford Field.
9-29-15: Matthew Stafford was efficient but couldn’t hit the big play in week three, as the Lions stayed winless in a 24-12 home loss to the Denver Broncos. Stafford completed 68% of his passes and moved the ball well enough, but turned the ball over three times and generated just one touchdown. Detroit didn’t do Stafford many favors on the ground, as Ameer Abdullah was the best rusher on the team and averaged just 2.9 yards per carry. The Lions did their best to stay in the game defensively, as they stifled Denver’s rushing attack and had Denver held to just 17 points until the Broncos’ final drive of the game. The Lions enter week four in desperation mode, as they’ll seek their first win of the year against the Seahawks in Seattle on Monday Night Football.
9-22-15: Matthew Stafford struggled for the second week in a row as Lions receivers had a tough time gaining separation in a rough 26-16 loss to the Minnesota Vikings. Stafford completed just 60% of his passes and tossed a pick while constantly being hit or hurried. Detroit’s running game didn’t come through in week two, as Ameer Abdullah had a paltry nine yards on six carries. Stafford was Detroit’s leading rusher, which screams just how bad the running game really was. Calvin Johnson at least showed up, as he recorded 10 catches and found the end-zone for the first time in 2015. A banged up Stafford is somewhat in question for week three, but the Lions remain hopeful he’ll be good to go when Detroit tries to avoid an ugly 0-3 start against the Denver Broncos.
9-15-15: The Detroit Lions stormed out to a huge 21-3 lead over the San Diego Chargers in week one and looked to be on the cusp of a dominant performance. That wouldn’t be the case, unfortunately, as the Lions slowed down after a fast start and ultimately fell on the road, 33-28. Ameer Abdullah was impressive in his debut, as he juked Eric Weddle for a nice touchdown early in the game and ended a solid day with 94 total yards. Abdullah arguably didn’t touch the ball enough in his first pro game, as Joique Bell was ineffective on six carries and the Lions didn’t stick with the ground game overall in what was a close game, throughout. Detroit mostly failed to impress through the air, as Matthew Stafford continued his road struggles with two interceptions that ultimately hurt the offense. Detroit’s defense was arguably the biggest issue, however, as they lost track of the tiny Danny Woodhead on two scores and got burned by Philip Rivers to the tune of 404 passing yards. It wasn’t all bad for the Lions, but they’ll have to correct their mistakes in a hurry when they head to Minnesota to take on a hungry Vikings team in week two.
9-8-15: Joique Bell will enter the first game of the 2015 regular season as Detroit’s tentative starting running back, despite killer preseason showings from rookie rushers Ameer Abdullah and Zach Zenner. Zenner surprisingly made the team despite being undrafted, but definitely was deserving of a spot as he mashed opposing defenses and displayed a feature back skill-set throughout the preseason. While Bell is the main man in the Lions’ running game for now, that may not last long due to the play of the two more talented rushers behind them. The stacked depth at running back is only a good thing, however, as Detroit will likely end up using some type of rotation when they take on the Chargers in San Diego in week one. Looking ready to go offensively, the Lions added some nice depth for the future recently, as they stole cornerback Stanley Jean-Baptiste after the Saints waived him. Jean-Baptiste was placed on Detroit’s practice squad and while he won’t play in week one, could end up giving the team solid depth in its pass defense down the road.
9-1-15: The Detroit Lions looked to be on top of their game in week three of preseason action, as Matthew Stafford tossed two scores in a 22-17 win over the Jaguars. Stafford was in complete control of the first team offense, as he connected with both Golden Tate and Corey Fuller for touchdowns. The Lions were just as good on the ground, as undrafted rookie Zach Zenner impressed for the third preseason game in a row with 85 rushing yards and the game-winning touchdown. Zenner made a strong case to make the final roster, but is still slated to be behind Ameer Abdullah and Joique Bell. Bell was recently activated from Detroit’s active/PUP list and is still expected to hold onto the starting running back job “for now”. Bell could hit the field in Detroit’s preseason finale on Thursday, when the Buffalo Bills come to town.
8-25-15: Matthew Stafford and the Detroit Lions remained on top of their game a week after producing a touchdown, as Stafford went 6 of 8 for 78 yards and helped the first team offense to a field goal. Detroit ended up losing their second preseason game to the Washington Redskins (21-17), but both sides of the ball looked good as they gear up for week three’s dress rehearsal. The defense oddly stood out the most, as they were all over Robert Griffin III from the very beginning, producing three sacks and a fumble recovery. Detroit was still strong in the running game, too, as undrafted rookie Zach Zenner impressed with his second straight stellar outing. Zenner only registered 22 yards on four carries, but hauled in five receptions for 59 yards and a score. Zenner could give the Lions a lot to think about as they begin to try to make their final roster cuts. He’ll have one more legit chance to prove himself next week, when the Lions head to Jacksonville to take on the Jaguars.
8-18-15: Joique Bell, who? The Detroit Lions didn’t seem to miss their would-be starter one bit in their first preseason game, as they rode several strong rushing performances to a big 23-3 win over the visiting New York Jets. Rookie rusher Ameer Abdullah lived up to the hype and then some in his NFL debut, as he dazzled on a 45-yard run and finished his day with 67 yards on just seven carries. Fellow rookie running back Zach Zenner was equally impressive, as he helped close out the game with tough inside running. Zenner ended the night with 55 yards on 13 carries and has recently even been sprinkled in with the first team offense. While the backups stole the show, the first team offense also looked fantastic in this one, as Matthew Stafford connected with wide receiver Golden Tate for an early score. Calvin Johnson sat the first preseason game out, but could be ready for his debut in week two against the Washington Redskins on Thursday night.
8-12-15: The Detroit Lions are slowly starting to feel better about their running back situation, as rookie Ameer Abdullah has impressed in camp and would-be starter Joique Bell is nearing a return. Bell has been out all summer with knee and foot issues, but is reportedly “ramping up” workouts to make it back in time for some preseason action. Due to Abdullah’s rise, however, Bell may need a terrific showing in preseason play to keep the rookie from stealing his starting job. Bell will likely remain out when the Lions take on the New York Jets on Thursday night, but could return shortly after their preseason opener. While Detroit may be getting one player back, they’re sadly losing another. Tight end David Ausberry suffered an undisclosed injury and was placed on injured reserve recently, effectively ending his season before it started.
8-5-15: The Detroit Lions weren’t 100% when they opened their training camp this past week, as starting running back Joique Bell was still on the shelf and defensive tackle Haloti Ngata began camp on the PUP list. The coaching staff still expressed confidence in Bell as the starter, but Bell himself still doesn’t know when he’ll be able to make his way back from foot and knee injuries. Rookie runner Ameer Abdullah has generated buzz with Bell out, and could cement a big role in the offense in his first season. Ngata is part of the plan to replace the departed Ndamukong Suh, but will miss some time with a nagging hamstring injury. The injury isn’t expected to be serious, but any time Ngata spends away from the field makes concerns over the defensive line grow even more. Detroit got some more bad news recently, as former running back Mel Farr passed away at the age of 70.
7-28-15: Class is in session for Detroit Lions rookies, who reported to training camp on July 28th. Running back Ameer Abdullah and offensive tackle Laken Tomlinson are easily the team’s two top rookies that stand to make the biggest impact. How they fare in camp could dictate how they’re used in the offensive backfield and on the o-line, respectively. Abdullah specifically could be in line for a good amount of touches, especially if starting running back Joique Bell shows up to camp with the rest of the veterans out of shape on August 2nd. The team will also get a good look at undrafted rookie rusher Zach Zenner, who the team is reportedly high on. On the defensive side, rookie corners Alex Carter and Quandre Diggs, as well as defensive tackle Gabe Wright, will all be names to watch.
7-22-15: The Detroit Lions had one of the nastiest defenses in the league a year ago. Without Ndamukong Suh and Nick Fairley manning the middle, it may be tough to replicate that going into 2015. The Lions will surely try, and fans will get their first look at Haloti Ngata in the middle of the line come training camp, which opens for rookies on July 28th and veterans on August 2nd. Losing their top two defensive tackles from a year ago could hurt, but the Lions will welcome back a healthy Stephen Tulloch and will look to get more out of second-year linebacker, Kyle Van Noy. Detroit seems set on offense, with Calvin Johnson returning to full strength and young tight end Eric Ebron potentially ready to bust out. The only real question comes at running back, where Joique Bell has some questions about his durability. That could leave rookie rusher Ameer Abdullah with a huge role in year one, while undrafted free agent tailback Zach Zenner could also factor into the mix.
5-4-15: The Detroit Lions were a surprise playoff team in 2014, but heading into the 2015 NFL Draft they were in danger of mild regression thanks to key losses in free agency. The Lions clearly changed course a bit on offense, as they set out to beef up their offensive line and add another running back to become more balanced. They accomplished that with stud guard Laken Tomlinson in round one and added elusive Nebraska running back Ameer Abdullah in round two. The Lions still had a question mark about their future at the defensive tackle position after losing both Ndamukong Suh and Nick Fairley in free agency, but grabbed Auburn interior defender Gabe Wright to slide behind Haloti Ngata. On paper, the Lions are now built to both run the ball and stop the run, while the rest may hang on whether or not quarterback Matthew Stafford can take his game to another level. Take a look at the rest of Detroit’s 2015 draft class to see where else they may have improved:
Round One - Pick 28: Laken Tomlinson, OG, Duke
Round Two - Pick 54: Ameer Abdullah, RB, Nebraska
Round Three - Pick 80: Alex Carter, CB, Stanford
Round Four - Pick 113: Gabe Wright, DT, Auburn
Round Five - Pick 168: Michael Burton, FB, Rutgers
Round Six - Pick 200: Qandre Diggs, CB, Texas
Round Seven - Pick 240: Corey Robinson, OT, South Carolina
4-9-15: The Detroit Lions saw their elite defensive line erode in free agency, as Ndamukong Suh left for Miami and Nick Fairley signed with the Rams. Detroit stopped the bleeding by trading for veteran nose tackle Haloti Ngata, and added defensive line depth via Darryl Tapp and Tyrunn Walker. The Lions may still want to add a young defensive tackle, but didn’t do a bad job in alleviating the pain of losing their best defensive player. Elsewhere, the Lions kept ace kicker Matt Prater and retained their top two backup quarterbacks. Detroit will enter the draft still needing to add some o-line depth, with cornerback potentially being their biggest issue on defense.
3-9-15: The Detroit Lions rode a solid offense and a surprisingly elite defense to a solid 2014 season. They even got back to the playoffs, but questionable officiating arguably screwed them over and they fell in the first round. That rise up hopefully won’t be short-lived, but it’s hard to say it won’t be with stud defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh reportedly taking the money ($114 million) and running to South Beach. Fellow defensive tackle Nick Fairley could follow suit, and just like that the Lions could be barren on a once stacked defensive line. The team lost some help on offense, too, as they dropped aging running back Reggie Bush into the free agency pool. Bush can be replaced by Theo Riddick in-house, but Detroit is going to have a tough task trying to rebuild their defense on the fly. If they can’t, they’ll once again be leaning hard on their offense to carry them in 2015.
1-6-15: On Monday, head of officiating Dean Blandino said that holding should have been called on Sunday’s controversial play that hurt the Lions’ chances of winning the contest. The Nick Fairley-less Lions had Ndamukong Suh in the lineup after he won the appeal of his one-game suspension, but Detroit’s defense could not hold its lead, as the Lions fell to the Dallas Cowboys, 24-20.
12-29-14: The Lions continued to have a lot of trouble in Green Bay, as they dropped their 24th consecutive game at Lambeau Field. Matthew Stafford completed just 20 of his 41 throws for 217 yards, but he did throw three touchdowns. Calvin Johnson caught two of the scores. Detroit will be in Dallas for the first week of the playoffs.
12-23-14: Although Matthew Stafford struggled in the red zone in Sunday’s game at Chicago, Joique Bell ran for 74 yards and a touchdown in the Lions’ 20-14 victory. On Monday, Lions center Dominic Raiola was suspended one game for stomping on Ego Ferguson’s ankle. The 11-4 Lions will travel to Green Bay to take on the 11-4 Packers in Week 17, and the victor will win the NFC North title.
12-17-14: After not scoring in the first quarter, the Lions were able to come back and beat the Minnesota Vikings, 16-14, as Detroit moved to 10-4 and tied with the Green Bay Packers for first place in the NFC North. Although Teddy Bridgewater had a higher completion percentage and more passing yards than Matthew Stafford on Sunday, the Lions shut out the Vikings in the second half.
12-9-14: The Lions scored in all four quarters on Sunday, as they defeated the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, 34-17. Matthew Stafford completed 26 of his 34 passing attempts for 311 yards and three touchdowns, one of which went to Calvin Johnson. The star receiver caught eight passes for 158 yards in the victory.
12-3-14: The Lions did not start well against the visiting Chicago Bears on Thanksgiving Day, but Matthew Stafford and company bounced back to win, 34-17. Detroit held the Bears to three points in the final three quarters. Calvin Johnson caught 11 passes for 146 yards and two touchdowns and became the fastest NFL player to 10,000 career receiving yards.
11-26-14: Reggie Bush continues to sit out, and the Detroit offense continues to struggle. Matthew Stafford completed just 18 of his 46 passing attempts on Sunday, as the Lions fell to the New England Patriots, 34-9. While they did not get into the end zone in the contest, Golden Tate caught four passes for 97 yards.
11-19-14: In one of the Lions’ first true tests of 2014, Matthew Stafford’s offense struggled mightily. Detroit took on the league-best Arizona Cardinals on Sunday, and the Reggie Bush-less Lions got just two field goals from Matt Prater. Those were the team’s only points in the contest, as Stafford threw for just 183 yards in the 14-6 loss.
11-12-14: Calvin Johnson returned from his ankle injury to play against the visiting Miami Dolphins on Sunday, and he caught seven passes for 113 yards and a touchdown. Detroit jumped out to a 10-0 lead on the Dolphins, but Miami battled back. Then, Matthew Stafford’s 11-yard touchdown pass to Theo Riddick with 29 seconds remaining gave the Lions the 20-16 win.
11-6-14: Calvin Johnson, Reggie Bush and the Lions got a much-needed week off in Week 9, as they both expect to be active against the Miami Dolphins in Week 10. Fortunately, Detroit won all three games that the team has played without Johnson. However, the team has not scored more than 24 points since Week 1.
10-30-14: At Wembley Stadium in London, England, the Lions played without Calvin Johnson and Reggie Bush. The game was truly a tale of two halves. The Atlanta Falcons scored all 21 of the contest’s first-half points, but Detroit bounced back in the final 30 minutes to win, 22-21. Matthew Stafford, who became the Lions’ all-time leader in touchdown passes, led the game-winning drive that ended with a Matt Prater 48-yard field goal.
10-21-14: Not many people expected to see the Calvin Johnson-less Lions come back from a 13-point deficit against the New Orleans Saints, but Matthew Stafford led Detroit to the 24-23 victory. Although the Lions could not accumulate many yards on the ground in this contest, the quarterback completed 27 of his 40 passing attempts for 299 yards and two touchdowns.
10-14-14: Even without Calvin Johnson and Reggie Bush, the Lions won Sunday’s game in Minnesota, 17-3. Unfortunately, Detroit’s star wide receiver could be out until Week 10, so the Lions defense will have to continue to carry the team. However, Detroit will have to take on a couple of high-powered offenses in the Saints and Falcons over the next two weeks.
10-8-14: The Lions had a very frustrat
ing Sunday as they lost at home for this first time this season. Early in the second quarter, Detroit got into the end zone for the second time in the game, but was shut out by the Buffalo Bills for the rest of the contest. Calvin Johnson’s ankle injury forced him out of the game, and Alex Henery continued the Lions’ kicking struggles. Consequently, the Lions released Henery and signed former Broncos kicker Matt Prater.
10-1-14: The Lions’ strong second quarter on Sunday led them to their third victory of the season. On Sunday against the New York Jets, the teams were tied after 15 minutes, but Matthew Stafford and company scored two passing touchdowns to grab the 14-point lead heading into halftime. The Jets put up some points in the second half, but it was not enough.
9-25-14: The Lions moved their home record to 2-0 on the season and are tied with the Chicago Bears at the top of the NFC North. Detroit’s defense, which led the team to the victory, finally played well against Aaron Rodgers. Then, the Lions cut kicker Nate Freese and signed former Eagles kicker Alex Henery.
9-17-14: The Lions could not muster much offense against the stout Carolina defense on Sunday. Matthew Stafford completed just 27 of his 48 pass attempts, but he did manage to throw for 291 yards, including a one-yard touchdown pass to Jed Collins. The Lions host the Green Bay Packers in Week 3, hoping to get back above .500.
9-10-14: The Lions played a terrific game on Monday night in front of their home crowd. Matthew Stafford and Calvin Johnson connected for two early touchdowns, and Detroit did not look back. Stafford’s receivers helped him out, as they did not drop a pass on Monday in their 35-14 victory over the New York Giants. Unfortunately, Detroit has lost cornerback Bill Bentley for the season due a torn ACL.
9-4-14: The Lions host the New York Giants on Monday night, but Mikel Leshoure will not be there because Detroit waived him last week. Reggie Bush and Joique Bell will be a two-headed monster in the backfield for Matthew Stafford, who looks to throw for more than 4,500 yards for the fourth consecutive season.
8-26-14: On Friday, the Lions defeated the Jacksonville Jaguars, 13-12, which continued Detroit's interesting preseason. Both of their wins came at home and were by the same exact score, 13-12. In addition, their other game was also a one-point game. Last week, the Lions released Drayton Florence just 12 days after signing the cornerback.
8-20-14: Last week, the Lions activated defensive end Ziggy Ansah from the active/PUP list. Then, on Friday, Matthew Stafford accounted for the Lions’ only two passing touchdowns. He helped the team jump out to a 13-0 lead, but Matt McGloin’s late-game throw led the Oakland Raiders past the Lions, 27-26. Dan Orlovsky also added an impressive 153 yards on eight completions for Detroit in that game.
8-14-14: While Johnny Manziel was the main attraction in the Lions’ preseason opener on Saturday, Detroit snuck by the Cleveland Browns to win the game. Kellen Moore’s 21-yard touchdown pass to Corey Fuller in the fourth quarter won the game for the Lions. Last week, Detroit waived Jon Baldwin with a failed physical designation two days after claiming him on waivers.
8-5-14: On Saturday, the Lions host the Cleveland Browns in their preseason opener, and they just added a receiver to their roster. On Monday, Detroit claimed Jon Baldwin off waivers from the San Francisco 49ers. With running back Joique Bell looking good after missing offseason workouts due to a knee injury, the Lions offense will continue to rack up yards.
7-30-14: The Detroit Lions have decided to pick up contract talks with defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh in 2015, while reports suggest they might even be content with letting the star defensive lineman walk in free agency. While the Lions are struggling over what to do about Suh, they can hang their hat on freakish defensive end Ezekial “Ziggy” Ansah continuing to develop. Detroit’s coaching staff has been gushing about the second-year player, as some have suggested he can become “an elite player”. With eight sacks last year as a rookie, there is speculation that Ansah’s rise to elite status could take place during the 2014 season. While there is positive hype around Ansah, he did start camp on the PUP list, along with wide receiver Golden Tate (shoulder).
7-15-14: The Detroit Lions will get a healthy Joique Bell back when training camp opens on July 27th for veteran players. Bell is now 100% recovered from a minor knee issue and will look to cut even more into starter Reggie Bush’s workload moving forward. The Lions are also looking to get more creative on the defensive side, as pass rushing specialist “Ziggy” Ansah is reportedly “excited” to become a more versatile player. The more ways Detroit can find to get the athletic Ansah on the field, the better for a solid, improving defensive unit.
6-5-14: The Detroit Lions have been busy locking up their 2014 rookie draft class, as they’ve secured center Travis Swanson and linebacker Kyle Van Noy in recent deals. Running back Joique Bell and wide receiver Ryan Broyles are two young offensive talents that continue to recover from injuries. Bell is confident he’ll be ready for camp, where he is expected to start to share the ball with Reggie Bush. Broyles needs a healthy and impressive camp to carve out a key role with the team. If he can’t stay healthy, he may be in danger of being cut during preseason action.
5-19-14: The Detroit Lions needed a true difference-maker for their passing game to help pry defense’s attention away from stud receiver Calvin Johnson, while they also could use an elite corner prospect to assist with improving a shaky secondary. Let’s see if they knocked out both needs in this year’s draft:
Round 1. Pick 10 Eric Ebron, TE, North Carolina
Round 2. Pick 08 Kyle Van Noy, OLB, BYU
Round 3. Pick 12 Travis Swanson, C, Arkansas
Round 4. Pick 33 Nevin Lawson, CB, Utah St.
Round 6. Pick 13 TJ Jones, WR, Notre Dame
Round 7. Pick 14 Nate Freese, K, Boston College
The Lions didn’t get an impact wide receiver early, but Ebron still certainly qualified as a difference-making addition to the offense. Blessed with elite size and athleticism for the tight end position, Ebron gives Detroit a second body off the line, while he has the speed to operate out of the slot, as well.
Detroit went on to add an exceptional linebacker in Kyle Van Noy in round two. Van Noy is a classic “jack of all trades” linebacker who tackles well and flys to the ball. He offers nice versatility, giving the Lions an interesting piece to use in their defense.
The Lions entered the draft needing a long-term option at center, and one fell into their laps with Arkansas center Travis Swanson being their pick in round three. Swanson is a terrific zone blocker and has excellent size for the position.
While the Lions added Ebron and did take a wide receiver in round six, it would have been nice to see them land one much earlier. They also addressed corner with Nevin Lawson in round four, but a corner somewhere earlier in the drafty would have been preferred, as well.
5-9-14: The Detroit Lions were looking for a difference-maker on offense or a stud corner in this draft. With the Cleveland Browns snagging the best cornerback (Justin Gilbert) off the board and the draft’s top two wide receivers also already gone, the Lions decided to take the draft’s best tight end. That ended up being North Carolina brute Eric Ebron, who was easily this year’s top tight end and is a potential game-changer. Thanks to an awesome blend of size, speed and natural athleticism, Ebron could really open up Detroit’s and allow Calvin Johnson to see fewer double teams.
4-28-14: Jim Caldwell takes over the Detroit Lions in 2014, and unlike his predecessor Jim Schwartz, he figures to lead a much more balanced roster on both sides of the ball. That could start by helping his talent on in the passing game, as Calvin Johnson only has Golden Tate to take defense’s focus away from him currently. If the Lions deem freeing up Megatron a priority (and they should), then Mike Evans and Marqise Lee could be near the top of their draft board. Ndamukong Suh trade rumors could also open the door to a defensive tackle in the first two rounds, while landing Justin Gilbert would help fix a shaky secondary. Detroit could also simply be in a position where they could draft the best player available in round one, where offensive tackle Taylor Lewan might be tempting.
4-18-14: Jim Caldwell takes over the Detroit Lions in 2014, who get their preseason schedule started off with a home game against the Cleveland Browns. Cleveland should be a fairly easy matchup for Matthew Stafford and co. to get adjusted as they try to get back to the playoffs in 2014. Week two should have the Detroit starters hit the field a bit more, as they head to Oakland to take on the Raiders. The Lions starters should see even more playing time in week three, as they have their third cakewalk matchup of the preseason as the Jacksonville Jaguars come to town. Week four marks an end to Detroit’s preseason schedule, as they head to Buffalo to take on the Bills. While the matchups aren’t the toughest on paper, Detroit could end up benefiting from earning some preseason wins to build their confidence as they prepare for the regular season.
4-7-14: Detroit did well to get wide receiver Calvin Johnson a running mate at the start of free agency, stealing Golden Tate away from the Seattle Seahawks. To keep the offense humming, the Lions made sure to hold onto starting tight end Brandon Pettigrew, while also retaining center Dominic Raiola. On defense, the Lions lost starting safety Louis Delmas, but was at least able to bring in another body in James Ihedigbo to compete for the open spot. The Lions still have questions in their secondary and could add another wide receiver in the 2014 NFL Draft.
3-21-14: The Detroit Lions are one of many teams completely starting over in 2013, as they moved on from head coach Jim Schwartz and are now under the guidance of the offensive minded Jim Caldwell. Caldwell made sure to right some wrongs early in free agency, as he grabbed former Seahawks wide receiver Golden Tate off the open market, ensuring Calvin Johnson would have a little more help on offense in 2014. The Lions also kept some solid in-house talent, holding onto starting tight end Brandon Pettigrew on a long-term deal, while also offering a tender to running back Joique Bell. The team also cut ties with safety Louis Delmas and lost a little depth on their defensive line with Israel Idonije jetting for Chicago, creating a couple extra holes for the Lions to focus on during the draft.
12-31-13: Already eliminated from playoff contention, the Lions couldn’t manage to end their season on a high note, as they blew a late 13-7 lead and fell to the Vikings in Minnesota, 14-13. Matthew Stafford managed to take care of the football in this one, but just couldn’t generate enough offense with number one wide receiver Calvin Johnson sidelined with a knee injury.
12-24-13: A week after the Lions suffered a horrifying home loss, they experienced another. Despite leading 20-13 on their home field with under five minutes remaining, the Lions decided to keep throwing the ball. Matthew Stafford ended up throwing an interception that was returned for a touchdown and the Lions went on to drop this one in overtime to the New York Giants, 23-20. The loss eliminated the Lions from playoff contention.
12-17-13: Matthew Stafford’s fourth quarter struggles continued and the Baltimore Ravens’ field goals were better than Detroit’s touchdowns in a heart-breaking 18-16 loss. Stafford got the Lions into the lead late on a solid drive, but couldn’t finish the comeback after Baltimore’s Justin Tucker nailed a 61-yard field goal to retake the lead.
12-10-13: Everyone on the Eagles and Lions had to deal with ridiculous snow and wins in week 14, but only Matthew Stafford seemed to really have a tough time with it. Stafford struggled mightily all day, completing just 40% of his passes and fumbling five times (losing one). Stafford’s ineptitude helped waste an early 14-0 lead for the Lions, who loosened their grip of first place in the NFC North with the 34-20 road loss.
12-3-13: Matthew Stafford and Reggie Bush combined for four turnovers to help make this a game early. However, both recovered and combined for four touchdowns to help offset their miscues in a massive 40-10 home blowout win over visiting NFC North rivals, the Green Bay Packers.
11-26-13: Matthew Stafford is arguably the reason the Lions stood a chance at home in a 24-21 loss to the visiting Tampa Bay Buccaneers in week 12, as he tossed three touchdowns and nearly hit 300 yards passing. But he was also easily the reason they lost, as he couldn’t take care of the football, throwing four picks - one of which got returned for a touchdown.
Matthew Stafford and Calvin Johnson were on their way to history in week 11, and both were on pace for single-game yardage performances for the record books. Their hot starts had the Lions overcoming an early deficit and looking nearly unstoppable with a half-time lead. However, Johnson wouldn’t catch a single pass in the second half as Detroit fell apart and fell to the Steelers in Pittsburgh, 37-27.
11-12-13: Matthew Stafford tossed three touchdowns (two to Calvin Johnson) and Reggie Bush topped 100 yards on the ground, as Detroit hung on for a tight win against the division rival Chicago Bears in week 10, 21-19. The win gave the Lions, who stopped a two-point conversion late that would have sent the game into overtime, sole possession of first place in the NFC North.
10-30-13: The Dallas Cowboys simply had no answer for Calvin Johnson in week eight, who went for an insane 329 yards and a touchdown on 14 receptions in a crazy 31-30 home win for Detroit. It wasn’t all gravy at first, though, as the Lions were down by 10 with just over six minutes to go, and needed a heroic touchdown drive by Matthew Stafford to lift them to 5-3 on the year.
10-22-13: The Detroit Lions lost their stranglehold on the NFC North in week seven, as they dropped a close game to the Cincinnati Bengals at home, 27-24. Reggie Bush ran hard all game, but couldn’t break many runs open as he struggled to just 50 yards on 20 carries. Luckily the elite connection between Matthew Stafford and Calvin Johnson was alive and well, as the two kept the Lions very much in this one by hooking up together for 155 yards and two scores. Detroit ultimately fell to a 54-yard field goal as time expired, giving them a heart-breaking loss and dropping them to 4-3 on the season.
10-15-13: The Detroit Lions were supposed to have a difficult time on offense with Joe Haden locking down a banged up Calvin Johnson on the road in week six. Matthew Stafford didn’t get the memo. Stafford went away from Megatron enough to guide the Lions to four touchdowns, while undrafted rookie tight end Joseph Fauria was the star of the day with three touchdown catches. It may have all been in futility, however, if not for excellent pressure on Brandon Weeden forcing arguably the worst interception ever thrown late in the fourth quarter. Detroit was able to score the final touchdown of the game following the horrible pick, putting this one away 31-17 and jumping up to 4-2 on the season.
10-8-13: The Detroit Lions had lost their last 22 games at Lambeau Field, dating all the way back to 1992. Thanks to a late-game scratch of star wide receiver Calvin Johnson, that atrocious streak continued in week five. Matthew Stafford’s tunnel vision on Megatron was disrupted without his top receiver, as the Detroit quarterback took five sacks and struggled to move the ball effectively until late in the game. Detroit’s defense was up to the task, allowing just one touchdown on the day to a usually explosive Green Bay offense, but their own offensive limitations were too much to overcome on the road, as they dropped to 3-2 with a 22-9 loss.
10-2-13: The Lions have signed wide receiver Kevin Ogletree. He had worked out with the team on Wednesday and the team decided to sign him.
10-1-13: Reggie Bush returned from a one week break due to injury to dominate the Chicago Bears to the tune of 140+ total yards and a touchdown, while the Detroit defense pressured Bears quarterback Jay Cutler into several bad decisions throughout this one en route to a 40-32 home victory. This one was a lot less competitive than the final score indicated, as the Lions were smooth and efficient on offense for the final three quarters, despite the Bears doing a solid job on star wide receiver Calvin Johnson (four receptions). In the end, the Lions simply played better defense and turned the ball over fewer times, sending them to a 3-1 tie for first place with Chicago atop the NFC North.
9-10-13: Things didn’t start out very well for the Lions against Minnesota on Sunday as Adrian Peterson got took the first ball he touched 77 yards to the house for a touchdown. However, he would rush for just 15 more yards on his final 17 carries as the Lions won the game 34-24. They were led by versatile running back Reggie Bush, who racked up 191 total yards and a TD. Despite a quiet game from Calvin Johnson (37 yards on 4 catched) Matthew Stafford put up solid number, completing 26 of 43 for 357 yards, two TDs and a pick. The Lions head to Arizona to take on the Cardinals in week 2.
9-5-13: Here are the Lions final roster cuts: Cuts: OG Rodney Austin, DB Ron Bartell, RB Shaun Chapas, P Blake Clingan, DT Andrew Fluelen, WR Corey Fuller, CB Chris Greenwood, OT Kevin Haslam, LB Brandon Hepburn, S Tyrell Johnson, OL Darren Keyton, LB Jon Morgan, RB Steven Miller, LB Jon Morgan, S Martavius Neloms, DT Ogemdi Nwagbuo, DT Xavier Proctor, DT Jimmy Saddler-McQueen, OL Jake Scott, S Amari Spievey, LB Chris White, WR Matt Willis.
8-16-13: After opening the preseason with a win over the Jets, the Lions were dropped by the Browns 24-6 in week 2. Matt Stafford was solid, completing 11 of 16 passes for 74 yards. Reggie Bush carried the ball 8 times for 15 yard and caught 5 passes for a team-leading 44 yards. Next week, the Lions will host Tom Brady (if his knee is OK) and the Patriots.
8-11-13: The Lions defeated the New York Jets 26-17 to open their 2013 preseason schedule. QB Shaun Hill threw for 136 on 11 of 18 and threw for a TD. Matthew Stafford completed just 3 of 8 passes for 60 yards.
7-10-13: Matthew Stafford passed the ball over 700 times for over 5000 yards in 2012 and the Lions went from a playoff team to the bottom of the NFC North at 4-12. Detroit is better than that, though, and the addition of running back Reggie Bush and returns of Nate Burleson and Ryan Broyles on offense should help show that. But offense isn’t really the problem, and Detroit’s pass defense has been shaky for years and the defensive line under-performed in 2012. However, first round draft choice Ziggy Ansah should help improve the pass-rush as a rotational piece, which in turn could positively impact the secondary.
4-30-13: 2013 Lions Draft Summary:
- Round 1, Pick 5 (5): Ziggy Ansah, DE, Brigham Young
- Round 2, Pick 4 (36): Darius Slay, CB, Mississippi State
- Round 3, Pick 3 (65): Larry Warford, OG, Kentucky
- Round 4, Pick 35 (132) (Compensatory Selection): Davin Taylor, DE, South Carolina
- Round 5, Pick 32 (165) (from Ravens and Seahawks): Sam Martin, P, Appalachian State
- Round 6, Pick 3 (171): Corey Fuller, WR, Virginia Tech
- Round 6, Pick 31 (199) (from Ravens through Seahawks): Theo Riddick, RB, Notre Dame
- Round 7, Pick 5 (211): Michael Williams, TE, Alabama
- Round 7, Pick 39 (245) (Compensatory Selection): Brandon Hepburn, LB, Florida A&M
3-30-13: The Detroit Lions have signed free-agent running back Reggie Bush to a four-year deal for $16 million deal.
1-1-13: Calvin Johnson set the all-time league record for receiving yards in a season 2013 with 1,964 yards. He also had two broken fingers during the record-setting game.
12-4-12 Last week’s loss to the Colts pretty much sealed the fate of the Lions as far as this season is concerned. At 4-8 they have no shot at making the playoffs and the road ahead is getting even tougher with a game against the Green Bay Packers whom they have already lost to in their own building. The lethal combination of Calvin Johnson and Mathew Stafford has not been able to propel the Lions back into the playoffs after their great year last year.