Thursday, November 8, 2012

FOUR Days Late "Live" Blog: Lions at Jaguars

We're rolling extra late this week. Apologies if this ruined your Wednesday. In the future, Wednesday will be my target date for these.

First Quarter:

15:00 - There is a large group of Lions fans that think Detroit should not continue to elect to receive at the beginning of the game. I am not one of these people. I do not think the Lions should just accept that they are doomed to slow starts. You keep working at it, and you fix it. Plus, I am not convinced the Lions defense is better than their offense.

13:01 - Lions fail to pick up a third down, after Stafford throws a dart to Titus down the sideline. Young didn't run much of a route, but the refs missed an obvious hands-to-the-face penalty on a Jaguars o-lineman.

11:40 - Jaguars go three-and-out. First two plays were good defensive plays by linebackers and third down was a poor throw on a well-covered receiver.

11:27 - I understand the inclination to jump all over Stefan Logan after letting this punt bounce inside the 10-yard line, but he just lost it in the sun. Could've happened to anyone.

10:39 - Prime example of my biggest pet peeve of Stafford. Plenty of time in the pocket, but his internal clock goes off too early, starts running to his right, and instead of throwing the ball away, runs out of bounds for a one yard loss. Poor pocket awareness, and poor play outside of the tackles.

9:59 - This personal foul penalty on the Jags is stupid. The defender has all of his momentum going towards the quarterback and cannot hear the whistle. By the time he gets to Stafford, he sees that Matthew has given up on the play and tries to take as much off the tackle as he physically can. If he wrapped Stafford up and took him to the ground, I would understand the flag, but he clearly tries to hold up.

6:31 - What an amazing play all around. Starts with excellent pass protection. Then Stafford throws an amazing ball to a bracketed Tony Scheffler. He is absolutely covered for the majority of NFL quarterbacks. But Stafford puts the ball where only Scheffler could get it and Tony makes an incredible grab and toe taps in bounds.

4:58 - The end to this drive pretty much summarizes the first half of the season for the Lions offense. Driving well for 40-50 yards, stall after a bad mistake (in this case, a badly overthrown ball to Bell), then screw something up and fail to get any points (missed FG).

4:11 - Play-action roll out plays continue to fool the defense. It only cost the Lions 6 yards on this play, but it was WIDE open.

3:40 - Excellent coverage on third down forces another quick punt. I repeat...excellent coverage.

2:20 - More annoying Stafford pocket presence. He correctly evades the initial rush, and steps up in the pocket. There was room there to set his feet and find a receiver, but Stafford is in full panic mode and is looking for the nearest hole. He doesn't find it and throws it at Titus Young's feet.

1:05 - NASTY cut by Leshoure.

0:10 - Calvin Johnson against zone coverage. Money.

Second Quarter:

14:30 - There is no color commentator in the world that sounds like he's just making things up more than Mike Martz. I'm not saying that he doesn't know what he's talking about, just that the way he talks makes it sound like it. It's like he's never used any football terminology in his life.

12:16 - Big ole' hole on Mikel Leshoure's first touchdown run of the game. Give Stephen Peterman all the credit in the world. He holds up his defender long enough for Gosder Cherilus to get around and seal him from the inside. And when Cherilus helps out, Peterman heads to the second level and obliterates a linebacker. Made it look easy.

11:50 - Good to see Lawrence Jackson pick up his first sack of the year. The guy seems like a really awesome dude, and is a must-follow on twitter. He's very interactive with his followers and really lets his personality bleed through.

10:30 - Stafford throws off his back foot and misses Scheffler. I am really starting to worry about Stafford's mechanics, especially in the face of pressure. He has to step into these throws and can't be afraid of contact.

10:23 - Ahhh...much better. He sets his feet, throws a dart, and it hits Pettigrew right in the hands at the first down sticks.

8:26 - GAHHHHHHHHH. Classic play as the defense jumps offside, so Stafford just throws it up to Calvin. Megatron breaks the first tackle, but is brought down on the one-foot-line. At this point, I want Megatron to score a touchdown more to shut people up than for the seven points.

7:58 - WEEKLY FOX RANT SECTION: The Lions have now scored two rushing touchdowns, and we have been treated to exactly zero replays of those plays (outside of the zoomed-in celebration replay they show as we head to a commercial). I know most people don't get all excited for blocking breakdowns, but some of us watch football for more than PASS PORN FANTASY FOOTBALL. Unacceptable.

...but since I have NFL Game Rewind and I get access to the coaches tape, let me tell you what you missed. On Leshoure's second TD of the game, Riley Reiff lays a dude OUT with a wham, cut block. Pretty much every other linemen goes for the cut block as well. Just look at the carnage after the play.

Five defenders on the ground as Leshoure dances in the endzone.

5:15 - Another great open-field tackle forcing another punt. This time, it's Jonte Green, who continues to not be the worst thing ever.

3:43 - Rick James' ghost lives on.




0:20 - Good to see the secondary play well after being tested downfield for the first time this game.

Third Quarter:

13:35 - Avril: don't celebrate a tackle on a third down run that gained a first down. 

11:50 - Terrible throw by Gabbert, but a great athletic play from Coleman. He went up and got a 50/50 ball. 

10:40 - Perfect throw to Bell on the swing pass, even better hurdle by Joique.

7:24 - Lions already appear to be in prevent mode. Consistently only sending four rushers with the linebackers dropping fairly deep into coverage. 

4:20 - Jags moving down the field with mostly the running game. A little concerning, but, again, I think the Lions are expecting pass most of the time here, and are probably okay with giving up 3-5 yards per play as long as the clock is moving.

2:00 - On the INT: pretty much a case of being at the right place at the right time for Jonte Green. That ball had no business not being caught by Jennings, but that's exactly why the Lions were content with allowing the Jags to methodically move down the field. The drive burned six minutes off the clock and the Jags eventually imploded to the tune of zero points. It sounds weird, but the defense really just helped burn clock. 

0:26 - Great cutback by Green, BUT PICK UP 20 YARDS. He slips and the Lions continue to be the only team without a rush of 20+ yards. I miss Jahvid.

Fourth Quarter:

14:54 - After about the 20th promo for "Animation Domination" my urge to kill Seth MacFaralane is unsustainable. As someone who owns seasons 1-3 of Family Guy, I never thought I would grow to hate the man I once idolized, but, man, that's some terrible television. Every promo I see is another dagger in my 18-year old heart.

14:00 - Oh, Titus. *sigh*


The rest of the game is not that interesting. The Jags score on a couple of long drives, as the Lions are willingly ceding 4-5 yards a play. In fact, the Jags only had two plays of 15+ yards the rest of the way, so the Lions were just letting the Jaguars bleed the clock out. It was good to see the Lions immediately respond after the Jaguars' first touchdown. But, at this point, I was bored and paying more attention to other, more interesting games. And as I said on Monday, I have no problem with that. In fact, it was refreshing to be bored by a Lions win...especially considering this will likely be the last "easy" win of the season.

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