We’re back!! And with the return of Detroit Lions football means it’s What Just Happened season? I’ve been waiting all summer for this moment, and I’m sure you have too. I‘m talking about the football there, not the What Just happened? But if you have been looking forward to WJH, you are the wind beneath my wings.
Anyhow, the Lions went back to work on Sunday, and things looked pretty darn good. The Lions beat up the Colts on their way to a 24-10 victory. The Lions are now three wins away from hoisting the preseason world championship trophy yet again. We’ll be dancing in the streets before you know it.
As always, I have some thoughts on the game. These are those thoughts.
Kung Fu Kenny GollaDamn!!
Someone call the Quad City DJ’s and tell them to change the lyrics to this song and make them about Kenny Golladay. The hype train was already in motion for Golladay. On Sunday, we found out that Vin Diesel was the conductor of this train. He then hit the NO2 button on the stick shift. Hoobastank played and everyone just freaked out.
The kid just took it to another level today. He only caught three balls, but every single one of them looked like he was playing Madden on easy difficulty against a basset hound.
A star may have been born on Sunday, definitely in the fantasy community. Don’t be surprised if Kenny goes a lot higher than anyone expected. I’m excited. You should be, too. But I still say we should all temper our expectations. Let’s see what Kenny can do in the regular season.
Where did this defense come from?
Here’s a team that had trouble getting to the quarterback last season, finished in the lower half of the league in sacks, and couldn’t get turnovers. On Sunday they looked the ‘85 Bears out there.
Keep in mind that this is preseason, so stop choreographing a new Super Bowl Shuffle. Just put the camcorder down. Still, there was a lot to see here that can generate some confidence. The Lions were able to notch five sacks on the day. They also forced the Colts to punt 11 times. They weren't able to reach the end zone until the final second of the game.
For a team whose defense was pretty bad in 2016, things were looking up. Here’s why:
A’Shawn Robinson is a grown man.
Yo. This bull rush by A'Shawn Robinson. Wow! Leads to a sack pic.twitter.com/hcaaSCAk90— Billy Marshall (@BillyM_91) August 13, 2017
Robinson’s day was done after the first half, but in the time that he was in the game, he was doing stuff like this. Robinson got into the face of the quarterback on the previous play as well. He also recorded two pass deflections. Robinson should be high on everyone's “break out” list.
The young guys put in work
Lions fans finally got to see guys like Teez Tabor and Jeremiah Valoaga in action, and they didn’t disappoint. Tabor had two really nice plays back-to-back early in the game: An open field tackle and quick stop of the Colts running back.
Valoaga was all over the place on Sunday, as was Jalen Reeves-Maybin. Valoaga finished the day with six tackles and a sack. Reeves-Maybin also had six tackles. These two guys were everywhere, making a strong case for them both to make the team and possibly get some significant playing time.
Not everything was good
Kerry Hyder injury update: Achilles. Significant. Doesn't look good.— Justin Rogers (@Justin_Rogers) August 13, 2017
This is bad news, and I, for one, think the NFL just needs to cancel the preseason altogether. Hyder went down pretty early in the game and it now looks like he’s going to miss a lot of time in 2017. I hereby suggest that the NFL just do weekly kickball games until the regular season starts. It sucks to see another player’s hard work go down the tubes because of an injury in a meaningless game.
The sky fell for ten seconds
Matthew Stafford was looking on the money early on, exactly what Lions fans were hoping to see. The Lions were getting first downs and moving down the field. Then this happened.
I'd say that INT was on Marvin. Drops continue to plague us. pic.twitter.com/jQOqsnUTdC— Logan Lamorandier (@LLamorandier) August 13, 2017
Your typical run-of-the-mill Stafford freak occurrence interception. I did see some upset fans, but I did not see one “Same Old Lions” tweet, and for that, I’m proud of all of you.
Don’t waste your time and look too much into this. It’s preseason and mistakes happen. Marvin catches that ball eight times out of ten. The only bad thing is that Stafford didn’t go out for another drive, meaning you won’t get to see him until Saturday’s game with the Jets.
Good news for Stafford
Greg Robinson surprised many on Sunday when he had a pretty good game. According to Pro Football Focus, Robinson only allowed one hurry in his 25 pass block snaps. That’s great news for a team that lost their starting left tackle for a significant amount of time. If Robinson can continue to look good, the Lions could suddenly find themselves with an embarrassment of riches on the offensive line.
All the quarterbacks looked good
First off, why is it that Jake Rudock and Brad Kaaya look like they’re both 12 years old? Rudock looks like Ricky Schroder, for crying out loud.
Maybe this just means that I’m getting older.
Anyways, both quarterbacks had a pretty good day, which was surprising to many considering most of the news on both guys from camp was negative. Still, Rudock and Kaaya managed to be pretty accurate all day.
Rudock went 13-21 with two touchdowns, and Kaaya went 8-11 with a single touchdown. I would still be quite worried if the Lions lost Stafford for any amount of time, but I at least feel a tiny bit better.
What happened to the undisciplined Lions?
Again, I know it’s preseason, but I’m used to the Lions grabbing a penalty on every third play. On this day, that was the Colts’ job. The Lions committed just six penalties for 46 yards on Sunday, and not a single one of them came in the first half.
That’s the kind of thing you like see in a football team. It’s real simple, the team that makes the least mistakes usually wins the game.
It’s just preseason
I can imagine that I’ll be ending the next three WJH articles with this statement, but it’s true. The preseason is not meant for the starters. It’s also not meant for predictions of how the regular season will go. Preseason is meant for roster building. So please don’t take any of these games too seriously. Your answers about how good the Lions will or will not be will be answered in a few weeks. Just have fun until then. Here, listen to this Candyman song.