Gridiron Gab Week Six Preview – Detroit at Philadelphia

The season so far hasn’t gone as planned for the 1-3 Lions, who now must get ready to come off the bye to face an Eagles team that has lost two of three with a win over the Giants in between.

Detroit has lost three in a row since a season-opening 27-23 win over St. Louis.

“That’s our challenge right now to dig our way out of this,” coach Jim Schwartz said. “There have been a lot of things that have happened that are not indicative of where this team will be after 16 games and like I said, we need to get those corrected.”

One big difference has been the Lions offense, which has for the most part been held in check in 2012. QB Matthew Stafford has been limited to three touchdown passes – he had 41 last season – and his four interceptions equal his total through eight games in 2011. He has yet to find Calvin Johnson in the end zone, though the star wideout ranks second in the league with 105.8 receiving yards per game.

“I’m not real surprised,” said Johnson, who had 16 TD catches in 2011. “We know teams aren’t going to let you do what you did last year. We have to find a different way.”

Detroit has lost six of seven on the road, including a playoff loss, while allowing averages of 36.6 points and 441.9 yards. The Eagles are hoping their loss to the Steelers last week was a bump in the road, and things will turn around at home vs the Lions.

Michael Vick has been a turnover machine in 2012, like last Sunday when he fumbled twice, once at the goal-line of an eventual final play 16-14 loss in Pittsburgh.

Vick’s eight fumbles are three more than any other player and his five lost fumbles also lead the league. “That’s how it goes in the NFL. You wish you could have some things back, and there are plenty of things I wish I could have back through the course of this season, but you can’t get them. I will do a better job of protecting the football,” Vick said.

The Eagles will turn to LeSean McCoy early and often Sunday vs the Lions, as the Steelers held him in check, but look for him to have big day on the ground and with catches vs Detroit.

Even coming off the bye, the mojo isn’t there for the Lions in 2012, and this Sunday will be another setback as the Eagles for one week get on track and to 4-2.

Philadelphia 20 Detroit 14

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