Well, that was fun, for a while. The Detroit Lions fell to 0-2 on Monday night as they lost 35-17 to the Green Bay Packers on Monday Night Football.
While the final score might not indicate it, this was actually a close game until a few costly mistakes by Detroit put the game out of reach around the start of the fourth quarter.
There were some highlights, and some things to be concerned about going forward. So, let’s jump into the grades!
Offense- 3/5 Stars
For the first 30 minutes of this game, Detroit Lions fans had hope that Jared Goff and the Lions’ offense might be able to find success. Then the second half happened.
After scoring 17 points in the first half, the Lions scored a whopping zero in the second half. That can’t happen, especially when the other side of the ball isn’t great either.
There were some positives, especially the offensive line. On numerous occasions, Goff had the luxury to sit back for ages before making a pass. They only gave up one sack on the night, which is respectable. If this line is as good as advertised, it will open up the playbook for the rest of the season for Anthony Lynn.
Quintez Cephus had another good game as well, grabbing four passes for 63 yards and a score.
The running backs were fine, but the game script prevented the rushing attack from getting many opportunities in the second half.
Best offensive player: T.J. Hockenson
The Lions’ top receiving option had another very strong game. Whenever Detroit needed a big play, Hockenson provided.
He and Goff also connected on this beautiful touchdown:
Everyone fully expected Hockenson to break out into a true superstar this season. And so far? We are seeing exactly that. He is clearly Jared Goff’s favorite target, and he should get plenty of work over the course of this season.
Worst offensive player: Jared Goff
Overall, Goff played a pretty solid game. But two bad plays really sunk the Lions’ chances in this game.
The first, on a fourth-and-one down by four in the third quarter the Lions elected to go for it. Goff threw incomplete to Quintez Cephus while both D’Andre Swift and Amon-Ra St. Brown stood wide open on the other side of the field.
The second, at the end of the third quarter after the Packers had scored to take a 28-17 lead Goff fumbled the snap and turned the ball over. The Packers would add another touchdown with the short field to put the game out of reach.
The Lions’ margin for error is so thin, that mistakes like that can take a close game and make it a blowout very quickly.
He also threw an ugly interception in the waning stages of this game, but by that point, the damage had been done.