Detroit Lions Week 16 report card: Lions fall flat on their face in Carolina
By Zach Payne
Coaching Staff: 1/5 stars
Aaron Glenn’s defense had been making tangible strides in the last few weeks. The run defense was improving drastically, and the front was generating a lot of pressure for opposing quarterbacks to deal with. That was completely absent on Saturday. Part of it is absolutely due to the lack of execution by the players, between poor discipline and awful tackling.
However, the scheme was not helping. Glenn still insists on calling zero blitzes, which puts so much pressure on a secondary that cannot handle it. For as poor as the execution was, part of it absolutely is a result of not putting players in a position to succeed. You cannot allow nearly 600 yards of offense to a bad Panthers team without the defensive coordinator facing a lot of criticism. Quite frankly, these are the kind of performances that cost coaches their jobs.
Now sitting at 7-8, the Lions’ playoff odds have taken a drastic hit. Even if Detroit won their final two games, they are going to need some help to sneak into a wildcard spot.
Saturday served as a harsh reminder of the differences in the NFL week to week. A week ago Lions fans were sold on this team going to the playoffs. Now it’s hard to imagine optimism will be high.