For a second straight week since the firing of Tom Lewand and Martin Mayhew, the Detroit Lions have won. They are now 3-7 and, depending on your view, are either salvaging the season or ruining their draft status. The 18-13 win over the Oakland Raiders was a close game, but for Lions fans, a win is a win, regardless of how they get it.
The Lions started off by taking the opening drive down to the 1 yard line. If not for a stalled drive, they should have took a 7-0 lead. Unfortunately, the Lions offense struggled and settled for a field goal. The Lions defense played well stopping Oakland and getting the ball back. The offense once again took off, but unfortunately had to settle for a second straight field goal. Both teams struggled to move the ball, with Oakland’s offense mounting drives that stalled in between the 40 yard lines. Detroit finally got a few first downs and moved the ball into Oakland territory. Once again though, Detroit settled for a field goal, taking a 9-0 lead into the half.
Oakland took the ball in the second half and drove the field on the Lions. The defense could not hold and Oakland’s Latavius Murray scored on a 1 yard touch down run. The game went to 9-7 Detroit and the Lions seemed to be in a rut. The offense stalled again, and the Raiders took control again. With a short field, the Raiders drove in and kicked a field goal to take the lead 10-9. Once again, Detroit could not move the ball and Oakland got a short field. They drove in and scored a field goal to take a 13-9 lead. That is when the Raiders stopped scoring and the Lions figured it out on offense.
With all parts moving in unison, the Lions offense took off. Matthew Stafford even got in on the action with a 18 yard run. After spreading the field in the red zone, Stafford took the ball on a draw and scored the 5 yard touchdown for a 16-13 lead. Oakland got the ball back and could not move the ball. Detroit also struggled. With a long field, Detroit’s defense stifled the Raider offense until Donald Penn committed a penalty in the end zone, granting the Lions 2 points on that safety. The game ended 18-13, but Detroit did drain the last 7:31 off the clock as a result of a fantastic clock management drive. Had the Lions not been able to drain all of the time off the clock, they were in position to score to add to the lead.
All in all, the Lions two game win streak is nice but will it last? The offense is still struggling but the defense is picking it up. Darius Slay is playing well in locking down receivers with Rashean Mathis out for the season. Thursday’s match up against the Philadelphia Eagles should be a tough one.