The Detroit Lions dropped their third game in four weeks on Sunday, and the season is not-so-slowly slipping away from them. Still, there were a handful of performances against the Dallas Cowboys that are worthy of individual praise. That’s why we have our weekly Game Ball polls.
Each week, we provide five candidates for the Player of the Game award. Your vote decides on the winner, while second and third place also get “points.” By the end of the year, it’s a nice look at which players were most impactful (in a positive manner) by the season’s end. Here are the standings through the first three games.
[Reminder: 1st place in voting gets 3 points, 2nd place gets 2, 3rd place gets 1]
Game Ball standings through Week 3:
Kenny Golladay - 6
Devon Kennard - 3
Kerryon Johnson - 3
Frank Ragnow - 2
Quandre Diggs - 2
Da’Shawn Hand - 1
Darius Slay - 1
Onto this week’s candidates:
Stats: 8 catches, 132 yards, 2 TDs
The Lions may not have been in this game if it weren’t for Golden Tate and his outstanding ability to tack on yards after the catch. His first touchdown was a thing of beauty:
His second score put the Lions ahead with just over two minutes left in the game. The man is playing like he really wants to get paid next offseason, and it’s hard to argue against his fantastic production thus far. He’s currently ninth in receiving yards and sixth among wide receivers in YAC.
Stats: 3 tackles, 3 passes defended
Early in the game, Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott challenged Darius Slay, and it didn’t go all that well for Prescott. Slay had three passes defended on one drive, and was single-handedly responsible for holding Dallas to at least two field goals early in the game. By the game’s end, Prescott pretty much gave up targeting Slay.
Stats: 24-for-30, 307 yards, 2 TDs, 0 INTs, 131.5 passer rating
There’s no doubt this was Stafford’s best game in 2018, as he returned to form. He even notched yet another fourth-quarter comeback drive thanks to some expertly thrown balls.
Stafford posted the fifth-highest passer rating of the week and completed 80 percent of his passes—fifth best in his entire career. His 10.2 yards per attempt was also the fifth-best of his career.
In other words, this was statistically one of the best games of his entire career, and he probably should have had an even better day had he not missed on some early throws.
Stats: 9 carries, 55 yards, 1 TD; 1 catch, 1 yards
It was a subdued day for Johnson, as he only received 10 touches on 20 snaps. But when he touched the ball, he made the most of it. His 6.1 yards per carry pushed his season average to 5.7 YPC, good for sixth in the league—right behind Ezekiel Elliott (5.8).
He also picked up his very first NFL touchdown on an impressive run:
Johnson struggled in the middle of the game, but so did every other back. It was still a fairly impressive performance from the rookie, especially his opening 32-yard run, and he continues to make a case for more carries.
Stats: 4 catches, 74 yards
It wasn’t a dominant performance from Golladay, but whenever the Lions needed a first down, Golladay seemed to be the guy who could pick it up for them. Each one of Golladay’s four catches earned a first down, and two were third down conversions—including a huge third-and-11, 15-yard catch.
And this was just nutty:
Time to vote below:
Who gets the Week 4 Game Ball vs. the Cowboys?
This poll is closed