The Detroit Lions have been notoriously slow starters through the first half of the 2012 season. In fact, they had yet to hold a halftime lead through their first seven games. That changed in a big way today against the Jacksonville Jaguars.
The Lions and Jaguars played to a 0-0 tie through the first quarter of play but the tone was decidedly one-sided. The Lions out-gained the Jaguars 134 yards to just 13 in the opening frame and a hit upright on a field goal attempt is the only thing that kept the Lions from taking an early lead.
Rather than the first quarter simply being a storm the Jags had weathered, the Lions built upon it and broke it open with three rushing touchdowns by Mikel Leshoure. The 21-0 lead was the first the Lions had enjoyed in the half time locker room this season.
The Jaguars couldn’t muster much offense all afternoon long. They finished with just 279 yards of total offense, over half of which came as a result of two meaningless fourth quarter touchdown drives.
Joique Bell added to the Lions’ strong rushing attack with 73 yards on 13 carries and a touchdown to go with the 70 yards and 3 touchdowns from Mikel Leshoure. It was the first time the Lions scored four rushing touchdowns in game since October 9, 2005 against the Baltimore Ravens.
Matthew Stafford was an efficient 22 of 33 for 285 yards. He did not throw a touchdown pass but was not intercepted either. The lack of a touchdown pass was hardly a problem considering the Lions ability to punch it in on the ground.
The win evens up the Lions’ record at 4-4 ahead of an important road trip to face the Vikings in Minneapolis.