The Detroit Lions wrap up the 2021 season with an NFC North bout against the Green Bay Packers. It’s been a tough season in Detroit, as they managed just two wins in Dan Campbell’s first year as head coach. But just because the wins didn’t come doesn’t mean progress wasn’t made in the first year of this rebuild. There’s undoubtedly a change in culture within the team, as players seem much happier on a day-to-day basis, and plenty of potential free agents have already expressed their desire to play again in Detroit next year. Additionally, we’ve seen growth in key players and progress in overall competitiveness with the team.
That said, last week’s blowout at the hands of the Seattle Seahawks undoubtedly left a bad taste in the team’s mouth. Thankfully, the 2021 season comes with an extra week, and Detroit could head to the offseason with a much more promising performance. The Packers won’t make it easy, though, as they plan to play their starters to keep fresh before they head to the postseason with their first-round bye already in tow.
We’ll be providing live updates from Ford Field, along with highlights and injury news right here. Just keep hitting that refresh button once kickoff starts at 1 p.m. ET.
The Packers got the ball first and got off to a hot start, with Aaron Rodgers finding Allen Lazard for 28 yards. The Lions had an opportunity to get off the field, but AJ Parker couldn’t take down Davante Adams short of the sticks on a third-and-10. The Packers, in fact, would convert four third downs on the drive, including this 1-yard touchdown pass to Lazard. 7-0 Packers.
The Lions weren’t able to respond, as Jared Goff took a sack on third-and-5. The Lions tried to get sneaky with a fake punt on fourth-and-13, but punter Jack Fox couldn’t connect with Godwin Igwebuike.
The Lions defense would make up for the mistake, though. The Packers quickly went three-and-out, and a Jessie Lemonier sack on third down would push them out of field goal range and force a punt.
Despite being deep in their own zone, the Lions would tie up the ballgame. First, Amon-Ra St. Brown set the Lions rookie receiving record with a 17-yard pickup. Then the Lions went to their bag of tricks with this perfectly-executed trick play with TOM KENNEDY connecting with Kalif Raymond. 7-7 tie.
The Lions defense made another great stand. As first rookie corner Ifeatu Melifonwu made a nice pass breakup on a deep ball to Adams. Then on the subsequent fourth down, Tracy Walker had a textbook open-field tackle to stop the Packers short of the sticks. Detroit took over on their own 43-yard line.