After the Detroit Lions gave away last week’s game to the Bears, losing to the Packers could very well be the early season dagger they can’t overcome.
For the Detroit Lions, it is indeed dagger time. For the third time in as many years under Matt Patricia, they dropped the season opener. All three were games the Lions should have won.
There are reasons the Lions got in this situation, like the injuries at cornerback that allowed fringe NFL players to be on the field at key moments or Jamie Collins getting ejected for trying to make a point to the officials, even though every player should understand that rule number one is don’t touch the officials.
However, this loss illustrates more problems than just a matter of losing key players on defense. It just reinforces how much better and deeper the defense needs to be.
And with a disgruntled Aaron Rodgers focused on proving he’s still among the best, this weekend could literally be dagger time for Detroit. Starting the season 0-2 in the division would put the Lions in a huge hole to crawl out of.
Despite D’Andre Swifts dropping what would have been the game-winning touchdown pass, and the two mistakes Matthew Stafford made with the bad sack he took causing Matt Prater’s missed field goal to be longer than it should have and the tipped pass late that was intercepted, the offense really wasn’t bad.
In all honesty, even without Kenny Golladay or new right tackle Halapoulivaati Vaitai in the lineup, the offense scored enough points to beat a Mitch Trubisky led team. Unfortunately, it was Matt Patricia’s signature defense that the Lions have played since he arrived which showed up and offered the Bears victory.
The pass-rush was spotty as best and the run defense certainly wasn’t all that good either. In the first half, the Lions defense was sustained by missed opportunities by the Bears offense.
In other words, poor passes by Trubisky squandered opportunities for Chicago and gave the Lions a false sense of security. You can bet in those same situations that Aaron Rodgers will make better passes.