Prior to the Detroit Lions’ game against the Indianapolis Colts I proposed five things to watch. Here is a quick look back to see how they played out.
- Ryan Broyles – I was really hoping to see another solid performance from Ryan Broyles but an early injury forced him out of the game after catching just one pass for three yards. The news is heartbreaking as it turns out Broyles tore his ACL just a year after working his way back from an ACL tear in the other knee.
- Calvin Johnson – There is still a very interesting story line to follow for the Lions this season and it is Calvin Johnson’s pursuit of the single-season receiving yards record set by Jerry Rice in 1995. Calvin’s huge day put him ahead of the pace.
- Quest for 5,000 – Like Calvin Johnson, Matthew Stafford has another milestone in his sights: a second-consecutive 5,000 passing yard season. Stafford’s 313 passing yards against the Colts was a hair above his season average and he is now on pace to finish with 4,988 yards. The 5,000 yard mark has been reached only five times in NFL history with Drew Brees the only player to do it twice but not in consecutive seasons.
- Pass Rush – The Lions have been mostly disappointing in their attempts to rush the passer this season but did a better job against Andrew Luck and the Colts. The pass rush wasn’t able to finish off Luck like they needed to do at the end of the game but for most of the game they brought enough pressure to force bad throws. Luck came up short on a number of passes under pressure and was intercepted three times. The Lions finished the day with two sacks, including one on a forced fumble by Cliff Avril.
- Attitude – For most of the game the Lions didn’t look like a team ready to pack it in for the season. They left themselves open to criticism for the way the game ended but the lack of a killer instinct has been problematic all season long rather than a result of being out of the playoff race.