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Three takeaways from Lions' win over Saints

Here are three things that jumped out to me on Sunday during the Detroit Lions' win over the New Orleans Saints.

Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

The Detroit Lions beat the New Orleans Saints by a score of 24-23 on Sunday. Here are my three main takeaways from the game:

A win is a win is a win

The Lions' comeback win over the Saints was far from pretty. The defense had some serious breakdowns throughout the game, and the offense... oh, the offense. If not for Golden Tate's speed and Glover Quin's interception, chances are the Lions don't win this game. The offense was a mess more often than not, and you can really blame several people for this. Joe Lombardi's play-calling was suspect, and the offensive line continued to struggle. Matthew Stafford also continued to struggle, and it just seemed like the offense wasn't on the same page yet again.

All of the issues the Lions had on Sunday are still concerning going forward, but all that matters for right now is that they won the game. The Lions have struggled to overcome poor performances like this in recent years, but they managed to get the win in spite of their mistakes on Sunday.

Golden Tate was the free-agent signing of the year

The Lions are now 2-0 this season without Calvin Johnson. That stat really goes back to the amazing job Golden Tate has done this season. He caught 10 passes for 154 yards and a touchdown on Sunday, and his 73-yard score sparked the Lions' comeback. The Lions may have signed him to be a complement to Megatron, but he's really been the Lions' top receiver this season. Just look at his numbers through seven games: 48 catches, 649 yards and two touchdowns.

The defense got the job done

On paper, the numbers from Sunday don't look all that impressive for the NFL's No. 1 defense. The Lions allowed 408 total yards, and Drew Brees threw for 342 yards on 45 attempts and had two touchdowns and one interception. The Lions struggled at times, and they even allowed a 46-yard touchdown pass. It was an uncharacteristic performance for this year's defense, but let's not forget that Brees is still an outstanding quarterback. The Lions did shut down the Saints' running game for the most part, and despite giving up some serious chunks of yards at times, the defense ultimately gave the offense a chance to win the game. Without the two turnovers the defense forced and a couple of key stops in the second half, the opportunity for a comeback wouldn't have been there.

All of this is a long way to say that numbers aside, the defense got the job done on Sunday. Given the way the game played out, the Lions easily could have been in a hole bigger than 13 points late in the fourth quarter. Thanks to the defense, though, the Lions were able to rally past the Saints for a comeback victory.

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