Detroit Lions: 10 observations from Sunday’s loss to Colts

Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford (Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports)
Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford (Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports) /
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T.J. Hockenson, Detroit Lions
T.J. Hockenson, Detroit Lions – Mandatory Credit: Billy Hardiman-USA TODAY Sports /

9. T.J. Hockenson is developing into one of Stafford’s favorite targets

Hockenson followed up his memorable game winning catch at Atlanta with a career high seven catches against the Colts.

With Golladay leaving the game with a hip injury, Hockenson appears to be the player who Matthew Stafford feels most comfortable with right now. He was targeted ten times in all, most of any Lions player.

Not even midway through the season, Hock is already approaching his rookie year numbers for receptions and yards, and has doubled his touchdown total with four.

There are few real positives to take away from Sunday, but Hockenson’s development as a pass catcher is one of them.

10. The Lions will probably be playing “meaningful games in December”

They don’t look anything like a playoff team, but at 3-4 with a soft November schedule, they’re hardly out of the running. Even in my pessimism, I’d say it’s likely that they finish November at 5-6 or 6-5, right on the fringes of playoff and maybe divisional contention.

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By the letter of the law, this would fulfill the supposed “mandate” from ownership to Matt Patricia, before the Packers/Titans/Buccaneers gauntlet finishes them off.