The Detroit Lions didn't just beat the Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday, the Lions absolutely demolished them en route to a 48-3 victory and the most lopsided regular season win in Lions history. Perhaps the most amazing thing is that the Lions didn't even play all that well in the first quarter. It took them some time to start consistently playing well on both sides of the ball. Once they took their play to another level, the Chiefs didn't stand a chance and were blown out of the stadium.
Early on, the Lions were on top in this game thanks in large part to mistakes by the Chiefs. On the first drive of the game, for example, Matthew Stafford threw a bad pass to avoid a sack and Kansas City's Jon McGraw intercepted the ball. He immediately fumbled it right back to the Lions, giving Detroit possession and a fresh set of downs. On the very next play, Kansas City picked up a personal foul, and they received a flag for roughing the passer on the play after that. Suddenly the Lions were on the KC 15, and they scored on a pass from Stafford to Calvin Johnson.
The Chiefs offense came out strong by punching the Lions' rush defense in the mouth on their first drive. Dexter McCluster got the drive started with 24 yards. The next two plays went for eight yards by Thomas Jones and 24 more yards by Jamaal Charles. The Lions couldn't seem to stop the Chiefs' rushing attack, but they did finally stand tough and bring up fourth down. The Chiefs settled for a 33-yard field goal, and more importantly, they lost Charles to an injury on third down. He lunged for the first down and came down on the yard marker awkwardly before rolling into Roary, the Lions mascot. It looked like Charles hurt his knee when he landed, and he was out the rest of the game after being carted off the field.
The Lions got the ball back and quickly went three and out. This would become a common occurrence for the next couple of drives, as the offense just couldn't move the ball. The Chiefs offense once again had success moving the ball when they got it back, but luckily for Detroit, Ryan Succop pushed a 44-yard field goal attempt wide left. No damage was done on the drive, and after this possession the Lions defense really started playing well.
The Lions and Chiefs traded punts for the rest of the first quarter and the first half of the second quarter. The Lions finally got something going again on offense with a two-play drive that began at the KC 45-yard line. Stafford completed a nine-yard pass to Nate Burleson, and he followed that up with a 36-yard completion to Tony Scheffler for a touchdown. Scheffler celebrated by pretending to create a fire and smoke signals after his second touchdown in as many weeks.
This game got out of hand so quickly thanks to six turnovers by the Chiefs. One of those turnovers was an interception by Chris Houston on a drive that began with a 45-yard pass to Dwayne Bowe. The Chiefs looked to be in business, but Houston picked off Matt Cassel and gave the Lions a chance to add to their lead before halftime.
Although the Lions did add some points on their next drive, they could have gotten more than a 51-yard field goal by Jason Hanson had it not been for some untimely penalties. A chop block negated a 47-yard pass to Burleson, and a big pass to Johnson that would have put the Lions close to the end zone was negated because of a holding penalty. A great pass and catch to Titus Young for 47 yards dug the Lions out of the hole created by the first penalty, but they only managed to get a field goal out of the drive.
This Lions also only managed to get a field goal after Cassel was intercepted by Amari Spievey on the next Chiefs possession. The Lions only had 30 seconds to work with, and they ended up going into halftime with a 20-3 lead after a 28-yard field goal by Hanson.
The first three drives of the second half ended in punts. One of those punts was by the Lions after they went three and out. When they got the ball back after another Chiefs punt, there was no three and out. Detroit moved down the field with a 27-yard pass to Burleson and a 35-yard strike to Jahvid Best, and they eventually found themselves at the one-yard line. It was third and goal for Detroit, and Stafford threw in the direction of Johnson, who had a rare drop. On fourth and goal the Lions went in Johnson's direction again, and this time he caught the pass from Stafford for a touchdown.
The Lions started to pour it on as the third quarter came to an end and the fourth quarter began. On the one and only play of the next drive for the Chiefs, Cassel was sacked by Kyle Vanden Bosch. The ball popped loose and Stephen Tulloch picked it up for the Lions. Five plays later, the Lions scored on a nine-yard pass from Stafford to Best.
The Lions continued to pour it on when McCluster fumbled on the second play of Kansas City's next drive. The ball was punched out by Eric Wright and Cliff Avril eventually fell on it after Louis Delmas failed to pick it up a couple of times. This time around the Lions needed six plays to get into the end zone, but once again it was Best scoring a touchdown from the Lions. He jumped over the pile from the one-yard line to put the Lions on top by a score of 41-3.
Wright created another turnover for the Lions on the ensuing drive. This time he intercepted a pass by Cassel at the KC 34. The Lions proceeded to take Stafford and a number of other starters out, giving the backups a chance to play. The end result was the same even without the starters, as Keiland Williams capped off the drive with a one-yard touchdown run on fourth and goal. The TD run was made possible by Shaun Hill finding Young for 28 yards on third down earlier in the drive.
After trading punts to run out the rest of the fourth quarter, the clock hit triple zeroes and the Lions left the field with an impressive 48-3 victory. Before time expired, Lions players gave defensive coordinator Gunther Cunningham a Gatorade shower in celebration of the win against his former team and the team that accused the Lions of tampering. To say the least, it was a satisfying win all-around, especially for Cunningham.
The celebration over this victory won't last long, because the Lions will soon have to turn their attention to next week's game against the Minnesota Vikings. Although the Vikings are 0-2, they lost by only four points to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sunday and only seven points last week to the San Diego Chargers. The Lions haven't won at the Metrodome since 1997, so they will have to keep it rolling next week to end their losing streak in Minnesota and pick up their third straight win to start the season.