Oct 22, 2012; Chicago, IL, USA; Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford (9) is sacked by Chicago Bears defensive end Israel Idonije (71) during the fourth quarter at Soldier Field. The Bears won 13-7. Mandatory Credit: Dennis Wierzbicki-US PRESSWIRE
Matthew Stafford’s face mask full of mud and grass after his fourth quarter interception last night is the enduring image of this season’s futility. The Lions just can’t seem to do anything right on offense unless they are trailing in the fourth quarter, again. The maddening thing is, that as bad as the Lions offense was last night they still had a chance to redeem themselves and win the game. But it wasn’t to be as turnovers killed them last night. It’s tough to win games in the NFL when you have three turnovers in the red zone.
The Leos have specialized in boring us to death in the first half of every game this year. It was especially bad last night as the offense went three and out on five of their first six possessions. How did one of last years most dynamic offenses in the NFL turn in the this boring unwatchable high school mess? The rest of the league has stumbled on a solution to stopping the Lions. The safeties play about forty yards deep and dare the Lions to do whatever they want underneath. Did I really see 6 men in the box last night on occasions? The plan is working exactly like the other teams want it to. The guys in Honolulu blue and silver don’t have the discipline to make long drives. Just like the rest of the league suspects, the Lions are incapable sustaining drives without somehow shooting themselves in the foot.
I know special teams coach Danny Crossman is under a lot of scrutiny lately, but Stefan Logan is the one who tried to catch a ball off his shoulders, not the coach. The coach on the hot seat now is offensive coordinator Scott Linehan. You know the coach is having a bad day when the camera is constantly showing his image on the screen. I know Matt Stafford is somewhat off this year – balls are sailing on him with alarming frequency – but that still doesn’t let Linehan off the hook. His play calling is unimaginative, and unproductive. Linehan is going to have to come up with counter move pretty quick against Seahawks next week or this season is definitely over.
I can’t remember the last time I watched a game and didn’t cheer for the Lions once the whole game. They just didn’t give me anything to cheer about. Who cares about a touchdown with 30 seconds left and you need another score anyway? Ndamukong Suh rag-dolling Jay Cutler was the only time I let out a yell the entire game.
The Lions have to be careful here. If they keep playing like this, they risk hearing those dreaded words again: same old Lions.