Sunday, January 4, 2015

2014 Game 17 - Lions @ Dallas Cowboys (wildcard playoffs)


The Detroit Lions lost to the NFL Officials 20-24 today... err, I mean, to the Dallas Cowboys of course. I can't even read a headline about the Cowboys win without putting an asterisk at the end of the sentence. There is simply no way a Lions fan could have watched the game and not have an extremely negative opinion on the officiating. For that matter, neutral viewers and even a few Cowboy fans would follow suit... though the Cowboy fans would have to stop laughing first. If I can think of some way to boycott the NFL and still watch my team I would.

The Lions had the lead, were within field goal range with a pass interference penalty on the Cowboys, the official announced the penalty over the PA system, the players moved down the field a ways, then the flag was picked up, after a Cowboy player ran onto the field without his helmet and complained about the call. He too should have been flagged, but was not. The drive resulted in a punt instead of points and then Dallas scored the game winning TD immediately after (because of course our star young punter had to shank the punt).

During the game the officials failed to call holding well over a dozen times, but I was prepared for that, as they did the same thing in New Orleans a couple years ago. I warned many all week leading up to the game that the officials would take away the effectiveness of the DL unless the DL actually sacked or pressured Romo, which they did early but failed to keep doing it all game long. Also during the game a Dallas player stomped on Bell and that was not called, we shall see if he gets a $70,000 fine, but I suspect not.

(had a link here, it's been taken down already, of the stomp)

I shall try this one instead.

Now that the Lions lost* this game, they are set to pick 23rd in the upcoming NFL draft. Since I am pretty sure you can't draft officials we will need to set our sites on possibly new players... after we see if the Lions lose their DC to a head coaching job elsewhere... and free agency... and all the rest, you know the drill. Of course, the Lions could get a party bus instead of drafting an official, as TMZ posted this pic of the head of officiating exiting a Cowboys party bus that started circulating on twitter during the game (I'm sure it was well before that, just hadn't noticed).

(had a link here too, it's also now gone, of the official exiting the bus)

Anyway, Matthew Stafford was 28 of 42 (66.667%) for 323 yards a TD and an INT (sacked 3 times). The Lions defense kept Romo to 19 of 31 (61.29%) for 293 yards 2 TDs and 0 INTs (sacked 6 times). They also kept the run game to 75 yards but allowed one rushing TD. The Lions still need to work more on special teams, but overall I'd say this game was lost due to turnovers and officiating.

Many Lions fans would say officiating, first last and everything inbetween. However, until someone can tell me how we fans can fine the officials for stomping on the Lions all we got to work with is getting better, so much better that our team can beat another team AND the officials. For that is what it will take.

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