The Detroit Lions –or at least the Detroit Lions’ backups and practice squad–took on the Denver Broncos on Sunday. The game went about as well as anyone expected given the laundry list of absences Detroit was dealing with.
And the list only grew, as linebacker Alex Anzalone left with an ankle injury and cornerback Jerry Jacobs exited with a potentially serious knee injury.
Given the circumstances around this game, the report cards are going to be more generous than they probably should be. Instead of ripping into a poor effort, we shall give the team a pass this week.
At the end of the day, the Lions are already one of the worst rosters in the league. When you add in a ton of players missing this game, it’s surprising the score wasn’t even more lopsided than 38-10 on Sunday.
Detroit Lions Week 14 Report Card
Offense- 2/5 Stars
When it was announced both T.J. Hockenson and D’Andre Swift would miss this game, is was easy to expect the Lions to be shut out.
But surprisingly, the offense wasn’t that bad. They only scored 10 points, but they had opportunities.
The passing attack was led by Amon-Ra St. Brown, who had eight catches for 73 yards as a nice follow-up to last week’s performance.
Aside from St. Brown, Josh Reynolds also had a decent day as he nabbed three passes for 52 yards.
Kalif Raymond was relatively quiet (four catches for 31 yards), but he scored the Lions’ lone touchdown.
Jared Goff wasn’t exactly spectacular, and he had some of his usual hiccups in this game. However, he made some good passes down the field for the second week in a row.
It’ll be interesting to see if Goff can build off these past few games when his two best weapons return to the field.
Best offensive player: RB Craig Reynolds
The Lions’ preseason MVP made his first appearance of the regular season, and he did not disappoint.
Coming into the game it seemed Detroit would rely on Jermar Jefferson and Godwin Igwebuike to lead the rushing attack. But with Jefferson still reeling from the effects of the flu that ravaged the team this week, and Igwebuike’s poor play, Reynolds got the majority of the snaps.
He started off with a bang, with a huge 35-yard carry to set up the Raymond score.
After that it was steady running, as Reynolds finished the game with 11 carries for 83 yards along with a pair of receptions for 16 yards. A very respectable stat line for someone who wasn’t expected to play just a few days ago.
Worst offensive player: RB Godwin Igwebuike
A very rough day for Igwebuike, and it goes beyond poor rushing totals. Though eight rushes for 25 yards is not all that flattering.
What made his performance stand out was a lack of ball security. On the second play of the third quarter Igwebuike fumbled, setting the Broncos up with great field position.
Igwebuike fumbled again, inside the Broncos’ five-yard line. He was fortunate enough to have stepped out of bounds as he got hit though, nullifying the fumble.
Regardless, with how poor he played and with how well Reynolds played, Igwebuike’s spot on the active roster just became a whole lot less secure than it was coming into the game.