Detroit gained an automatic first down after an illegal contact penalty on Arizona but a holding penalty on Lion center Graham Glasgow pushed Detroit backwards. The Lion signal-caller misfired on 3rd &13 and Sam Martin had to come in again to punt the ball away.
Rosen completed back-to back first down passes to his receiver Trent Sherfield to open up the last quarter for his team. Defensive tackle A’Shawn Robinson nearly sacked Rosen but settled for a tackle after the young QB gained one yard past the line of scrimmage. A few plays later, Robinson was whistled for a roughing-the-passer penalty which put the Cards deep into the red zone.
David Johnson burst through the middle of the Lions’ defense to gain 9-yards and despite a nice gain again on the next play, Detroit kept him out of the end zone. Rosen missed Fitzgerald in the end zone on third down.
The Cards had to settle for a 22-yard field goal to make it a single possession game, 10-3 Detroit.
Zach Zenner had two consecutive carries for a cumulative total of 21-yards on those carries and on his third carry, he gained enough for the first down as the clock continued to tick downwards. A defensive pass interference penalty on Budda Baker gave the Lions even more yardage as they tried to put this one away.
After another strong Zenner gain, yet another Cardinal penalty pushed the Lions right into the red zone. On the next snap, Zenner took the ball down to the 1-yard line of Arizona. Detroit rewarded Zenner with the payoff of running it in for the touchdown, 17-3 Detroit.
That was an impressive series for the fourth year runner from South Dakota State as he gained 40+ yards on his seven carries.
After another round of offsetting penalties, the Cards got a chance to replay third down but Rosen was sacked on the play. Arizona went for it on 4th & 20 and the pass was incomplete.
Detroit continued to stick with Zenner try and run out the game and after forcing Arizona to burn the last of their timeouts, Detroit punted it away one last time.
As this one came to an end, Matt Patricia’s defense impressively kept the Cards out of the end zone, 17-3 Final, Detroit wins.
This game didn’t really say much about the Lions offense but it spoke volumes about them defensively. As I stated before, Detroit’s defense was one of the silver linings for this team in a lost season and they showed why in this game as they overwhelmed the Cards.
Yes, Arizona is a lesser opponent but in the NFL a win is a win and Detroit can take all of the positives that they can get.
Next week, the Lions keep their road show going with a trip to upstate New York to face off against the Buffalo Bills.