The Detroit Lions faced their toughest competition of the season today in their game against the Arizona Cardinals. The Cardinals came into today 8-1 and the Lions 7-2. The game promised to be competitive, defensive, and fun to watch. All of which came true. Unfortunately for the Detroit Lions, they were on the losing end in this one, falling by a score of 14-6. The game started off very fast. Arizona jumped out to a 7-0 lead on their very first drive of the game. They capped the drive off with a 42 yard touchdown pass from Drew Stanton to Michael Floyd. Detroit proceeded to go three and out and punted to Arizona. With the ball back in Stanton’s hands, the Cardinals drove the field again, with the help of a 49 yard pass to Robert Hughes. They capped off their second straight drive with another Drew Stanton touchdown pass to Michael Floyd, this one for 12 yards. In what felt like a heart beat, the Lions were down 14-0.
The Detroit Lions answered that second drive with a drive of their own. They got help from Joique Bell on a 33 yard run to get into Cardinal territory but their drive stalled, forcing them to kick a 50 yard field goal. On the very next drive, the Cardinals were on the move again. Stanton led his offense deep into Lions territory with the help of a 30 yard pass to John Brown. With the ball easily in field goal range, Stanton threw his first interception of the season to Josh Bynes who returned it 17 yards. Detroit took control, moving the ball into Arizona territory with the help of a 20 yard pass to Golden Tate, but penalties forced them out of field goal range and the Lions punted the ball to Arizona.
Both teams failed to move the ball on their next few drives and ended both with punts. The Cardinals, with the ball at their own 40 and 2 minutes left of the half, were looking for more points. Stanton fired a pass that was intercepted by Cassius Vaughn and returned 25 yards. Detroit once again could not move the ball on Arizona’s stingy defense and settled for a field goal. The field goal made it 14-6 going into the half, and that was how the game ended.
The second half featured a lot of mistakes, great defensive play, and poor offensive play. The game lived up to what it was supposed to be, a defensive battle between two great defenses. Unfortunately for the Lions and their two great receivers, the corners for the Cardinals were just too good to overcome. The coverage was great by Arizona in the second half and defensive coordinator Todd Bowles dialed up consistent pressure on Matthew Stafford, getting 4 sacks and an interception as a result. The Lions are now 7-3, tied with the Green Bay Packers for first place in the NFC North and battling for a playoff spot in the loaded NFC.