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Lions vs. Giants: What Just Happened?

A collection of thoughts on the Lions’ victory in prime time.

NFL: Detroit Lions at New York Giants Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports

Let me open up tonight’s “What Just Happened?” by saying how weird it is to start a WJH in the fourth quarter as opposed to waiting for the game to completely end. But this just wasn’t the Lions I’ve been used to watching.

Despite the world picking the Giants to dominate the Lions, Detroit turned out to be the dominant team. They picked up a big 24-10 win in prime time.

As always, I have thoughts on this game. These are those thoughts.

Pirate, One-Eyed Stafford and His Hidden Treasure

Matthew Stafford continued to add to the list of weird injuries he’s suffered by adding a poked eye to his list of ailments. Granted it wasn’t that bad. After all, he did do this right after getting poked by Devon Kennard:

Matthew Stafford keeps making that money in 2017. The Lions quarterback ended his day going 15-21 for 122 yards and two touchdowns. He also had a completion percentage of 71.4 and a passer rating of 117.6. He’s pretty good you guys.

Who is this defense?

The Lions’ defense was pretty bad in 2016. It was also supposed to be the Lions major weakness in 2017. This was supposed to be the reason the Lions lost their first two games.

The pass rush in particular was supposed to cripple this team. After two weeks they’ve racked up six sacks and forced five turnovers. This won’t last forever. They can’t keep up this type of production. But it’s safe to think the Lions defense isn’t nearly as bad as we all assumed it would be.

Ziggy got sacks

Ansah was a monster Monday night. The defensive end had just two sacks during all of 2016. He had three against Ereck Flowers and the Giants. If Ansah is about to return to his 2015 form, things are about to get real scary around here.

Did the Lions Run the Ball?

Yeah, they totally did, and they did it well. Ameer Abdullah had himself a pretty nice game with 86 yards on 17 carries, and Theo Riddick had 20 yards on nine carries. Oh yeah, some guy named Matthew Stafford had 23 yards on three carries.

All told, the Lions finished with 138 rushing yards. That’s 23 more yards than their passing game. Yes, the Lions won a game with more rushing yards than passing yards for the first time since Chester A. Arthur ate a live alligator on the White House lawn.

Eric Ebron Plays and Scores

Odell Beckham Jr. catches four passes and Aaron Donald has two tackles and zero sacks this year. It’s a stupid take by me, but so is revisionist history.

Jarrad Davis Wins The Intercontinental Championship

Jarrad had himself a nice night as well. He picked up a couple of key tackles and a big sack on Eli Manning, but this is where I have an issue. Jarrad needs to tone it down a little. I’m glad he made the tackle, but he has to stop approaching every single one of them like he’s Yokozuna.

Sadly, Davis left the game in the fourth quarter after going through concussion protocol. Hopefully for the Lions, this was more of a precaution than anything.

It’s the Little Things that Count

It was nice to watch the little things go the Lions’ way for once. The Lions won a challenge on a fourth-down spot that really helped them ice the game in the end. They also got two free plays in a row. The first one being the big one. How many times have the Lions been burnt for having 12 men on the field? On Monday, they did the burning.

Jamal Agnew: Punt Returner Forever

When the Lions drafted Jamal Agnew, I had no idea who he was. The first thing I found out about him was his work on special teams. I fell in love immediately. I then talked on and on, all summer long about how he should be the punt returner. At camp, I even bugged him about it in our one-on-one discussion. I knew it would work.

It’s only been two weeks but this looks like something that’s going to be happening all year long, and I couldn’t be happier about it.

Greg Robinson Is Really Bad at This

Robinson looked really bad on Monday night. He drew penalty after penalty after penalty. And when he wasn’t doing that, he was just generally getting beat all day like a rug that has a lot of dirt on it.

This can’t keep being this way. The Lions need to get some of that special stuff the Toon Squad gave Michael Jordan in Space Jam. They then need to IV it into Taylor Decker’s veins and hope he can get back as soon as he’s eligible to come off the PUP.

Final Thoughts

For this team to start out 2-0 for the first time since 2011 is a big deal, but the Lions still have some problems that need to be fixed—namely penalties and Greg Robinson. But this team still looks like a team that can beat the Falcons on Sunday, and who knows after that? The sky is the limit when you play like this.

As for the thought that the Giants would win, and win with Odell Beckham in the lineup, well that must have just been a rumor: