If you're not aware by now, Pro Football Focus is a website that focuses on grading NFL players for their individual performances based on an in-depth review of every snap for every game. If you're interested, here is a look at their grading system.
What a game. The Detroit Lions made it look easy against the Eagles, and it was a sight to behold. From Golden Tate's walk, to Ziggy Ansah's turkey dance, it was an extremely fun and entertaining game. Who cares about draft position when you can cheer on your favorite team and watch them finally win some games? Let's take a closer look at the individual performances from Thursday's game.
Matthew Stafford: +6.8
Calvin Johnson: +4.5
Larry Warford: +3.1
Riley Reiff: +2.3
Theo Riddick: +2.2
Laken Tomlinson: +1.7
Michael Ola: +1.1
Joique Bell: +1.0
Brandon Pettigrew: -2.1
Travis Swanson: -1.3
Guys. A +6.8 overall grade for a QB is insanely high. If it holds up, it would be PFF's fourth-highest QB grade given out on the season. It would be Stafford's fourth-highest grade of his career. Give all of the credit in the world to Stafford for hanging in there after a rough start to the season. He was throwing darts into tight windows and looked like the Stafford that fans have wanted to see all year. A ton of credit goes to the offensive line as well.
Four of the Lions' five offensive line starters had an overall grade of +1.1 or higher. Travis Swanson earned the only negative grade from Thursday's game and is now ranked 30th out of 36 centers via PFF.
Brandon Pettigrew has also been struggling and has earned a -2.0 grade or worse in three straight games. The stars are starting to align for him, and I'm finding it harder and harder to believe that he'll be a Lion next year.
Michael Ola has been decent. That's a major upgrade over what we've seen at the right tackle position earlier in the year.
Calvin Johnson is still great at catching footballs.
Ezekiel Ansah: +5.9
Tahir Whitehead: +4.6
Devin Taylor: +2.3
Isa Abdul-Quddus: +2.2
Jason Jones: +1.9
Darius Slay: +1.5
Stephen Tulloch: -1.7
Glover Quin: -1.2
Here is a little bit of advice for the Lions' new management in regards to Ziggy Ansah:
Seriously. Ziggy has been on a tear lately and is now tied with J.J. Watt for leading the NFL with 11.5 sacks. His +5.9 pass-rushing grade is the highest of his NFL career.
Tahir Whitehead earned positive grades in run defense (+1.7), pass coverage (+1.9) and even as a pass rusher (+0.9). He dominated on just 35 snaps and earned the highest grade of his career.
Jason Jones has quietly had easily his best season as a Detroit Lion. He hasn't been outstanding, but he hasn't been a liability either.
I'd also like to give a shoutout to Isa Abdul-Quddus, who has been mentioned in 'Best Grades' for three straight weeks now and also made this spectacular play against the Eagles:
Eagles WR Jordan Matthews gets jacked up by Lions FS Isa Abdul-Quddus https://t.co/BtWj5YuWky— The Sports Daily (@SportsDailyBlog) November 26, 2015
Sam Martin: +2.1
After Thursday's performance, PFF has Martin graded as the seventh-best punter in the NFL, with a +15.5 overall grade.