For the Lions, getting that first win of the season was nice, but it essentially is time to move on. 1-5 certainly isn't good enough, and adding a 2nd win going into the bye week would actually be very good in most fans' eyes. Standing in the way of that winning streak however was a New York Jets team that has the playoffs on their minds, meaning that they won't go down easy.
Detroit just got behind too early and never was able to recover and make the comeback. They showed some signs of life late in the game, but a defense that literally couldn't stop anything proved to be the downfall for the Lions. If it wasn't for one of the worst defensive performances all season, then Detroit may have had a chance to get the win. In the end, it was a shootout in the 4th quarter, and the Jets just scored more points, leading them to a 31-24 victory.
As I said, the Lions quickly fell behind, digging themselves in a deep hole. From the very start of the game the Jets moved the ball down the field and attacked a lot of Detroit's defensive weaknesses. First, it was Leon Washington, who hurt the Lions most when the day was over, getting into the endzone from 5 yards out to give the Jets an early advantage. Then, going through the air New York struck again. This time, Chad Pennington threw a 44 yard pass into coverage, but somehow Justin McCareins came down with it for the touchdown. After one quarter, Jets lead 14-0.
Detroit had to get some points in order to stick around and have a chance to comeback later on. Falling behind by more than 14 points would ultimately banish any hopes of a Lions victory. To do that, Jon Kitna went through the air himself to his go-to guy Roy Williams. This pass came from 22 yards out and was as perfect as you can possibly get. With the score, Detroit only trailed by a touchdown; that is, until the Jets rushing attack found more holes in the Lions defense.
Kevan Barlow got a touchdown of his own from 3 yards out to increase the lead to 14 points again. With both Barlow and Washington having a seemingly easy time racking up the yards, it appeared that it would be a long day for the Detroit defense. The appearance was correct. By game's end, NY had a total of 221 net rushing yards. That alone is going to cause a loss.
Moving into the second half, the scoring in this game didn't get going again until the final quarter. Although Jason Hanson did convert a 25 yard field goal in the third quarter, it was the only points scored. Getting to the fourth and final quarter, the defenses would completely disappear and the offenses started heating things up.
First, Mike Nugent kicked a 33 yard field goal to once again increase the lead to 14 points. Then, it was Kevin Jones striking back to get the Lions within just one touchdown. Jones caught a 9 yard pass from Jon Kitna and fought his way into the endzone for the TD. With the Lions starting to come back, the Jets needed another score to put the game away and provide a cushion.
Leon Washington stepped up and provided that score. Washington, who is only a rookie out of Florida State, got his second touchdown on the day when he ran 16 yards into the endzone for the TD. It didn't look like Detroit even had a chance now, but knowing the Lions, they'd find a way to make it close but to only fall short.
It couldn't have been any more predictable. Lions came out and thanks to Mike Furrey, who had a career day of his own, got back within one touchdown. Furrey not only scored on a 18 yard pass from Jon Kitna, but also had 9 other catches that included 2 on 4th down to get the conversion.
Deciding between an onside or kicking it down the field, Detroit came out looking to try and get the ball back since they only had 1 timeout left and just 2:22 to get something going. Jason Hanson ended up basically squibbing it down the field trying to catch New York off-guard, but it didn't work as the Jets fell on the ball. All it would take now is a first down, and the Jets would walk away with a win. None other than Leon Washington fought hard enough to move the chains, and to give New York their 4th win of the season.
For the Lion, they now head into their bye week with a dismal record of 1-6, and will hope to come out following the bye with more success. This bye will be important to not only get many guys back from injury, but also to just take a break and get away from the game. When you are 1-6, a break in the action for a week can help in the sense that when you come back for the next game, thoughts of the losses might not be in your head as much. Either way, the Lions' next game comes on November 5th when Detroit hosts the Falcons.
During this bye week, enjoy the time away from a Lions game as we won't have to see a team that has so much talent do so little. Check back throughout the week here at POD for updates around the league since there is a chance to explore some of the other teams, and thanks for reading.