The Lions caught their first break today during the coin toss when Chiefs’ coach Todd Haley chose to defer, letting the Lions choose to receive. The Lions drove down the field in creative fashion to take a 7-0 lead and never look back. It is just ridiculous to put your defense on the field first against an explosive offense in a very loud stadium on the road. That allowed the Lions to get off to a hot start and got the Ford Field crowd going.
The Chiefs gashed the Lions on the ground early in the game using the defensive line’s aggressiveness against them. The Chiefs ran draws and delays letting the front four run themselves out of the play. The run game dropped off heavily after Jamaal Charles suffered what appeared to be a very serious knee injury.
The Lions defense clamped down on the Chiefs once their big play threat was out of the game and the opportunistic Lions forced six turnovers. The Lions converted all six into 34 points. The Lions’ pass rush didn’t put up huge sack totals, but harassed Mat Cassel all day limiting his chances to throw downfield and forcing errant passes all day.
Now some may question why the Lions ran up the score going for it on fourth and one late in the game, but remember the Chiefs accused the Lions of tampering last offseason. The Lions did what all 32 teams do, but the Chiefs felt like blowing the whistle. The Lions were furious about the ruling and appealed it, getting a compromised ruling. The Lions don’t forget slights like that and showed that they won’t take them lying down.
The Lions dominated in all phases of the game, even in penalties which have plagued them at times. The Lions really put their strategy into play the last two weeks building an early lead then forcing teams to deal with the defensive front while coming from behind. The Lions let the Bucs get back in it last week, this week they closed out properly.
Stafford threw an ill advised pick on the first drive, but former Lions John McGraw fumbled the ball giving the Lions another shot.
A few plays later the Chiefs gave the Lions 30 free yards after two personal fouls for unnecessary roughness and roughing the passer. For some reason CBS announcers like to accuse Lions of throwing punches when they are clearly not. The first victim was Suh in the preseason and this week they accused Titus Young of throwing a punch when replays showed he was pushing the Chief that tore his helmet off his head away from him.
The Lions faced a fourth and one from the one while leading 20-3. The Lions went for it and Stafford threw a dart to Calvin Johnson to put the game away 27-3.