I decided to get the NFL preseason live package, so I could watch and re-watch the Lions pre-season games and those of our opponents. I am trying to determine where we stand as a team this year. I am going to use the pause option to break down our starters on each of the plays by watching each play and player several times to help analyze during the writing of this post. Our Starters play by play analysis begins after the jump.
Stafford calls tails it's heads Steeler's choose to recieve.
Pettrey kicks the ball down the middle to the 7 yd line to Logan it is returned to the 21 where Ekejiuba makes a crushing hit.. Solid performance by the kick coverage team.
1st and 10 Mendenhall runs up the middle and cuts right off the Suh double team and picks up 5 yards before being brought down by Avril with a little help from Follet. Looks like Follet over persude just a little and should have shot the gap just outside of Suh. The play looked like it was initially setup to run between the center and LG but the defence had that closed off.
2nd and 5 Quick drop Leftwich passes low but complete to Wallace at the 37 yard line. Houston was playing off respecting the speed of Wallace and quickly touched him for the stop. The ball was well placed by Leftwich where only his reciever had a chance at the ball.
1st and 10 Mendenhall trys it up the middle again Dizon hit the gap perfectly for the intial hit and Vandenbosh cut inside to finish it up for no gain on the play. Williams is consistantly getting a push on his man. The defence looked solid on this play.
2nd and 10 Mendenhall again cuts it outside a Suh double team and Follet shifted a yard closer MLB prior to the snap and that shift put him a step out of position to stop the play short. As Mendenhall ran passed Follet to the 45 yard line C.C. Brown poked at the ball and knocked it loose sending it back to the 38 yard line where it was picked up by Flozzel Adams. A heads-up play by C.C. Brown turned what would have been a 9 yard gain into a 1 yard gain. I think an adjustment keeping Follet a bit wider would help prevent the big gains, but I say that not actually knowing his assignment on that particular play that may have been Houstons responsibility but Wallace had a two fisted hold on his Jersey stretching it, a holding penalty should have been called on Wallace.
3rd and 9 Lions rush 4 Suh and Williams get the double team KVB gets quick pressure and forces an incompletion. Excellent job by the DL most notable was Suh and Williams breaking away heading to the direction of the errant pass continuing to hussle.
Punt and a boneheaded play by DW I will not say anything more. Lions ball
1st and 10 at the 3 Best runs right for 3 yards. Gosder was a beast on this play he pushed his man 5 yards back, it was enough to frustrate him and cause a minor scuffle.
2nd and 7 at the 6 Best makes a quick cut back to the right and gains 6 yards. Peterman and Gos did a nice job opening up a large hole for the cutback lane.
3rd and 1 Lions break the huddle quickly preventing the Steelers to make short yardage changes., but Best is stopped for no gain. I liked the strategy but would have liked to have seen Stafford come with a hard count before the snap to try and draw them offsides.
Punt to the Steelers 47
1st and 10 Avril blows by Adams like he was shot out of a cannon and sacks Leftwich. Steelers continue to double team Suh and Williams leaving Avril 1 on 1.
2nd and 18 at the 39 Moore runs up the middle good penetration by the DL allows King to step up and get his helmet on the ball knocking it loose. Moore quickly picks up his own fumble anf falls ahead for 3 yards.
3rd and 15 KVB beats his man on a nice inside move a hits Leftwich forcing a dead duck throw.
Punt fair catch DW at the 15
1st and 10 at the 15 Best runs for 1 yard a good job by Timmons filling up the cutback lane and bringing him down.
2nd and 9 at the 16 a nice pass to CJ for a big gain is called back due to a Backus tripping penalty . Looked like incidental contact due to the momentum of Backus being knocked on his ass by James Harrison
2nd and 17 at the 8 Stafford throws a safe short pass right to Gronkowski for. 8 yards.
3rd and 10 Best wasn't ready for the bullit Stafford shot his way, it goes off his hands and is intercepted by Clark. Best has to make that catch and take it in stride he had running room if he could've snagged it ,in his defence it was a timing play and appeared just a spli second to early. REDZONE TURNOVER
1st and 10 at the 17 Mendenhall tries it up the middle for a yard tackled by Williams.
2nd and 9 at the 16 Phillips storms into the backfield on a run blitz and takes down Mendenhall for a loss of 4 on the play good call and execution.
3rd and 13 at the 20 Again good pressure by the DL forces Leftwich to dump it short to his TE Miller for a short gain. Good stand by the D holding the Steelers to a 35 yard field goal. 3-0 Steelers
DW has a nice return to about the 32 yard line what stood out to me was Felton was the other man back deep with him on this return. Lions have their best field position thus far.
1st and 10 A nice pitch and catch from Stafford to Recepticon Nate on the right sideline for 11 yards and another 1st down. Good footwork by Nate.
1st and 10 at the 41 Best takes it around the left corner to what looks like about a 16 yard gain bad camera work makes it difficult to see for sure. Nice burst of speed and balance displayed by Best
1st and 10 at the Steeler 43 PENALTY illegal formation uncovered lineman after the TE shifted sides.
1st and 15 A nice quick pass to CJ on the right side for 8 yards safe and effective.
2nd and 7 at the Steeler 39 Stafford is dead on target hitting Nate in the numbers for a 8 yard gain and another first down.
1st and 10 at the 31 Stafford hits Best in the left flat for a 9 yard gain. A softer throw then the one Best missed earlier.
2nd and 1 at about the 21 Best spins off what could've been a 4 yard loss and turns it into a 4 yard gain and another first down. Very impressive.
1st and 10 at the 18 Stafford throws a corner fade to the right the ball was a bit low to take take advantage of CJ's size and allowed the CB to make a play. incomplete.
2nd and 10 Stafford hits Sheffler undernieth coverage for a 6 yard gain. I think this play is always going to be open.
3rd and 4 at the 12 Steelers come with a blitz Stafford makes a quick read and is again dead on target to Bryant Johnson and yes he held onto the ball for a 10 yard gain.
1st and goal at the 2 Stafford again throws a low pass on a fade to CJ to the left. CJ became the defender on this play not a good throw at all.
2nd and goal Stafford hits CJ in the endzone on the right side on a fade stop pattern good call after throwing a few fades on the drive to CJ. TOUCHDOWN LIONS WOOT WOOT YEE HAW
A nice time consuming drive overcoming a 5 yard penalty a good job by the offense if we can continue to do this we will be in every game we play .
P.S. Ekejiuba was in on the tackle on the ensuing kickoff he was a nice pick-up