Detroit Lions Week 17 Review: The Good and the Bad

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30. 49. Final. 20. 50

The Detroit Lions flew into Lambeau Field with a lot to play for. An NFC North title, a first round bye week, and ending a 23-year winless streak in Green Bay was all on the line for Detroit yesterday. Unfortunately for the Lions, they were unable to muster up any real threat of beating the Packers on the road.

Though the Lions will be looking to move on from yesterday’s loss and focus on playing the Dallas Cowboys in next week’s wild card matchup, it will likely be overshadowed by Ndamukong Suh’s alleged intentional step on Aaron Rodgers’ already injured calf.

Suh’s incident with Rodgers will certainly be reviewed, and if it does lead to a suspension, we may have just seen Ndamukong Suh’s last game as a Lion.

The game ended with the Packers winning by a score of 30-20. Many will blame the officials for their questionable calls against the Lions, but in reality, this game was lost after plenty of mistakes made on all three phases.

To take a closer look, I’ll begin with the good and bad takeaways from yesterday’s game.

Dec 28, 2014; Green Bay, WI, USA; Detroit Lions wide receiver Calvin Johnson (81) catches a touchdown pass during the third quarter against the Green Bay Packers at Lambeau Field. Green Bay won 30-20. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

The Good

Calvin Johnson

There weren’t many good takeaways from yesterday’s grueling defeat, but Calvin Johnson remains one of the few bright spots on this team week in and week out. He only had four catches on 11 targets, but two of those catches went for touchdowns.

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With the First Pick

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  • Johnson has done all he can to keep the offense afloat, but Stafford’s struggles paired with the rest of the offense’s inability to keep the ball secure still haunts the Lions.

    Joique Bell

    Bell had a costly fumble late(ish) in the game — though it was credited to Stafford — but his overall performance was an impressive one. Between Bell and Packers running back Eddie Lacy, it took nearly all 11 defenders to bring each of them down on any given play.

    If I didn’t know any better, it appeared as if Joique Bell was one of the only players on the Lions who played like they actually wanted to win an NFC North title.

    Jeremy Ross

    Ross had a pretty solid day for himself, all things considered. He caught both passes thrown his way for 33 yards, and even looked good as a return specialist for the first time


    in a while. When Ross picks an alley and is able to burst through it he’s at his best. When he overthinks his options he tends to dance around for no gain.

    Travis Swanson

    I will admit I was a bit worried about Travis Swanson starting in place of Raiola. I mean Raiola has been bad, but there’s always a chance the next guy can be worse, especially if there is no chemistry there. But Swanson looked good snapping the ball to Stafford, and got the ball in Stafford’s hands quickly.

    In terms of blocking, I can’t really complain, cause I don’t recall a single instance where Swanson made a blatantly obvious mistake that led to an offensive failure.

    Honorable Mentions:

    Eric Ebron, Theo Riddick, DeAndre Levy, Isa Abdul-Quddus, Ezekiel Ansah

    Next: The Bad: Ndamukong Suh and More