Entering today, the Lions had not won a game televised locally since Dec. 23, 2007, when they beat the Chiefs. That stat is thankfully no longer applicable, because Detroit beat the Rams today by a whopping score of 44-6.
Given the score, it may be hard to believe, but early on things were moving pretty slowly for the Lions. They were tied with St. Louis at three, and the offense had no rhythm whatsoever. That all changed after Stefan Logan electrified the crowd to start the second quarter, however. After a St. Louis field goal, he took the ensuing kickoff back 105 yards for a touchdown. It was the longest play in the NFL so far this season and put Detroit on top, 10-3. (The Lions' field goal came at the start of the game thanks to great field position from a failed St. Louis surprise onside kick.)
After Logan's return, all momentum was on the Lions' side. The defense continued playing well by making stops and forcing turnovers, and the offense finally had success moving the ball. That was especially evident on a touchdown drive capped off by a one-yard pass to Calvin Johnson. Shaun Hill was operating smoothly as the Lions ran some no huddle, and the end result was a 17-3 lead.
St. Louis answered with a field goal, but the Lions used the 1:41 left on the clock to their advantage by quickly moving down the field. Detroit was playing for a touchdown and appeared to get it on an amazing catch by Calvin Johnson. It was reviewed and revealed that he only had one foot down, but that only delayed the inevitable. Brandon Pettigrew caught a three-yard touchdown pass later on the drive to give Detroit a commanding 24-6 lead at halftime.
In the second half, it was more of the same for the Lions. Detroit made a stop to start the third quarter and followed it up with another touchdown drive. Nate Burleson caught a pass, made a spin move and ran 26 yards for a touchdown to make it a 24-point game.
In the fourth quarter, Detroit added two field goals, from 48 and 47 yards, and a defensive touchdown. Alphonso Smith picked off a Sam Bradford pass and took it 42 yards to the house to put Detroit on top by a score of 44-6. It was Smith's third interception in as many games and the Lions' second of the game. On the previous drive, Ndamukong Suh batted a pass up to himself and intercepted it, setting up a field goal for the Lions.
This was just an all-around perfect game for the Lions. They dominated St. Louis in what was the most impressive Lions victory since they blew out Denver, 44-7, back in 2007. On offense, Shaun Hill played great, going 21 of 32 for 227 yards and three touchdowns. Defensively, the Lions played tremendous as well by forcing St. Louis to settle for field goals or lose the ball on a turnover in the red zone in the first half and just shutting them down in the second. The Rams actually outgained Detroit with 341 total yards to 322, but they couldn't put the ball in the end zone on three early red zone chances and had zero drives produce points in the second half.
This was a game the Lions needed. We've seen their potential all season long in four straight losses, but finally they were able to show their potential off with not only a win, but an all-out beatdown of St. Louis. Hopefully this gives them some momentum next week as they head to New York for what will be a tough game against the Giants. Also, hopefully Calvin Johnson isn't too seriously injured, as he left the game in the fourth quarter with a shoulder injury (on an amazing diving catch) and had it wrapped up on the sideline. That was just about the only negative to take away from an otherwise perfect day for the Lions.