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- 2 scores on 3 chances (1 touchdown, 1 field goal, 1 interception)
The Lions had a pretty average day at the office when it came to red zone chances against Green Bay. The first appearance came on the Lions' opening drive of the game and ended with a turnover when a Shaun Hill pass was picked off. Hill threw the pass in the direction of Jahvid Best, who slipped and fell, so it wasn't really Hill's fault.
The next red zone appearance came at the end of the first half. Detroit got into the red zone and then actually exited it thanks to a penalty by Stephen Peterman and a sack for a loss of 10. As a result of the two plays, the Lions found themselves backed up to the 29-yard line. Two plays later, though, Hill hit Calvin Johnson for a spectacular 21-yard touchdown catch over two defenders.
The final red zone appearance was in the fourth quarter. The Lions actually started the drive with the ball in the red zone, as Jordy Nelson fumbled another kick return. Detroit once again recovered for the great field position, but unfortunately all they got out of it was a field goal.
- 2 scores on 2 chances* (2 touchdowns)
Green Bay's two red zone chances both resulted in touchdowns. The first one came on a drive that started inside the 20 thanks to a fumble, just like one of the Lions' red zone trips. Jahvid Best coughed up the ball and Green Bay took over at the Detroit 12-yard line. A few plays later Aaron Rodgers found Jermichael Finely for a 13-yard touchdown pass.
The Packers' other red zone trip came on the very next drive. The Lions went three and out, and thanks to a 48-yard pass to Donald Driver, the Packers went from their 32 to Detroit's 17 in one play. On the very next play Rodgers connected with Greg Jennings in the end zone for a touchdown.
*The Packers entered the red zone at the very end of the game and the only play they ran was a kneel down, so I didn't count that.
The offense can't really afford to miss out on a touchdown like they did on their final red zone chance, but at least they got a field goal. The first red zone trip, which resulted in a turnover, is unacceptable, though. Yes, it was a case of bad luck with Best slipping, but the Lions can't leave points on the field by turning the ball over in the red zone in a game where a single field goal changes everything.
Defensively, the Lions actually did a pretty good job of keeping Green Bay out of the red zone. One of the Packers' trips inside the 20 was a direct result of a fumble by Best, and the other was after a massive coverage breakdown. The bad news is that Green Bay turned both into touchdowns, but on the bright side, the defense wasn't consistently bad by any means on Sunday. They kept the Packers out of the red zone as best as they could, and aside for a few minutes where Green Bay had all the momentum, the defense didn't allow a single red zone appearance.