Sunday, November 9, 2014

2014 Game 9 - Detroit Lions vs Miami Dolphins @ Home

I have a feeling.

The 7-2 Detroit Lions narrowly beat out the 5-4 Miami Dolphins at home today 20-16 after trailing them for much of the 2nd half. In fact, the Lions didn't regain the lead until there was 29 seconds left on the clock when Stafford threw a TD to the 3rd string running back Riddick. Stafford ended up 25 of 40 (62.5%) for 280 yards 2 TDs and 1 INT. It was definitely not one of his better games (like I haven't said THAT before) but he started out okay and finished in great come back fashion. The problem is, he didn't need to have to come back from behind if he simply wouldn't take so many risks throwing to CJ when it wasn't warranted or necessary, and if he could but throw more accurately more often. I have a feeling I will be saying that an awful lot over the forthcoming games and probably years.

Meanwhile the Lions defense held Miami to just 207 passing yards, just 50 rushing yards, got an interception and caused three fumbles recovering one of them along with 3 sacks. Those are astoundingly great numbers for any NFL defense. No, they weren't perfect every single snap, and no, they gave up some yardage here and there (especially in the 3rd quarter when they were gassed) but overall, in the grand scheme of things, the Lions defense proved they are for real. I have a feeling I will be saying that more often as well.

I hate it when I have to bring up the officiating but man, there were some calls and non-calls this game that were so offendingly one sided that it's hard to ignore. Had the Lions actually lost this game I do believe there would have been a rather large outcry about the officiating, but I could be wrong. Of course, as we have learned in the past, any kind of outcry about the officiating is met with pretty much no response at all, officially or even publicly. I only hope that in their weekly report to the NFL that the Lions coaches do politely broach the subject. I also hope that in the end it does some good somehow. I have a feeling it probably won't though.

Okay, so, the Lions are now 7-2. The last time that happened the babies that were born that year are this year having their first legal drinks in their local bars (that's right people, the last 7-2 start was in 1993, the Barry Sander's years). Anyone remember those? I do. Barry Sanders got me hooked on the NFL in general and the Lions in particular. After almost making the superbowl in 1991 and the letdown of 1992 many of us Lions fans were feeling pretty good about 1993 until the wheels fell off. Here's hoping I never have to say that kind of thing ever again.

So here we are, the Lions have a great defense, they have a quarterback who appears to need great quantities of adrenaline to play well enough to pull off a last minute win (3 times in the last 3 games, winning the 3 games by a accumulated total of 6 points, all come from behind victories), and remain in sole possession of 1st place in the division with the Green Bay Packers still nipping at their heals. I have a feeling I will be saying that again too in the weeks to come.

Next week the Lions have a road game, in Arizona, against the Cardinals, who are 8 and 1. Plus, to top it off, the recently re-signed Palmer may have hurt his ACL and might miss the rest of the year to injury leaving Drew Stanton as their QB for this upcoming and all future 2014 games. I can't even begin to describe my feelings about that. This is an all important conference game, possibly with a team vying for home field advantage in the playoffs. A team the Lions may actually have to face in the playoffs (yes I said the "p" word). And at QB for them is none other then the former Lion Drew Stanton. With the NFL's number 1 defense (hard to get used to saying that too) the Lions stand a reasonable chance at a win in the desert... I have a feeling... ah, no, can't say it, can't jinx it, won't predict it, just let's get to next week already so we can all view another Lions game, and thank you for joining me in knocking on wood.

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