Looking to build off of two solid performances against the Packers and Dolphins, the Detroit Lions had a huge letdown game in Detroit, as the Seattle Seahawks controlled the game from front to back. With three turnovers and no running game, the Lions looked outmatched on their way to a 28-14 defeat. Here’s how it happened.
The Lions defense was out to start the game, and while Damon Harrison Sr. wasn’t in there to start—ending his 87-game starting streak—his impact would be felt almost immediately. After giving up to medium-sized runs, “Snacks” entered the game and quickly shut down Seattle’s rushing attack. The Seahawks would get to midfield before punting the ball away when Romeo Okwara picked up a sack on third down.
The Lions methodically worked their way to midfield in a slow-paced drive. Facing a tough third-and-10, Matthew Stafford somehow avoided pressure and unleashed a bomb to Marvin Jones Jr. for a 39-yard touchdown. 7-0 Lions.
Watch the magician pull this rabbit out of a hat:
This is CLASSIC Stafford pic.twitter.com/Yq5Hxcp9wN— Detroit Videos (@DetroitVideos) October 28, 2018
The Seahawks would answer with an impressive drive. Quickly they worked their way into Lions territory as the first quarter came to an end.
On the second play into the next quarter, Russell Wilson dialed a deep ball of his own. Nevin Lawson was toe-to-toe with Tyler Lockett, but Lockett found separation at the last second and hauled in a 24-yard touchdown to tie up the game. 7-7.
Ameer Abdullah was back to return a line-drive kick. After getting past the 30-yard line, Abdullah took a big hit and coughed up the ball, giving Seattle excellent field position. Three plays later, Wilson found David Moore in tight coverage with Teez Tabor for the 15-yard score. 14-7 Seahawks.
The Lions were able to work their way to midfield on the next possession thanks to an unexpected, but successful, screen to LeGarrette Blount. From there, though, the drive stalled and Detroit was forced to punt the ball back to the Seahawks.
It looked the Lions were about to force a punt, but a review ruled a deep catch to Moore complete, extending Seattle’s drive. The Seahawks would have all sorts of success running the ball before working their way into the red zone. Seattle would cap the drive with yet another contested-catch touchdown. This time Ed Dickson elevated over Quandre Diggs—who was in a perfect position—for the score. 21-7 Seahawks.
The Lions, only on their third possession of the game, couldn’t get anything going for a two-plus minute drill. Thankfully, a good Sam Martin punt pinned the Seahawks deep, preventing them from attempting to score any more points before the half. The two teams would head into the locker room with the score 21-7 Seahawks.
The Lions didn’t go three-and-out to start the second half, but they didn’t much better. After a 12-yard pass to Kenny Golladay—his first target of the game—the Lions couldn’t manage another first down. Stafford was sacked on a third-and-2, and Detroit quickly gave the ball back to the Seahawks.
Thanks to another big play from Lions-tormenter Ed Dickson, it looked like the Seahawks were about to put this game away. However, Seattle went for it on fourth-and-goal, and thanks to an illegal touch penalty, the Lions made a stop and got the ball back on their own 1-yard line.
The Lions were able to get out of the shadow of their own end zone, but, once again, they stalled right around midfield. Detroit would end up punting the ball back to Seattle with 3:16 left in the third quarter, but at least we got this play from Kerryon Johnson.
The Lions defense continued to struggle into the final quarter of the game. Faced with a couple of huge third downs, the Lions couldn’t get off the field, and it was only a matter of time before Wilson hit on another huge play. He did, dropping a 45-yard pass right into the hands of Moore, with Teez Tabor a good two steps behind him. Chris Carson would punch it in on the very next play. 28-7 Seahawks.
Going no-huddle, the Lions offense dinked and dunked their way down into Seattle territory. To cap the drive Stafford laid a perfect pass to Marvin Jones Jr. for an 19-yard strike. The drive only took 3:43 off the clock, giving the Lions some hope to stay in this game, but they’d need some help from their defense to get back in it. 28-14 Seahawks.
The defense at least gave them a shot late. Needing a big third-and-1 stop, the Lions defense got one, thanks to a huge tackle from Jarrad Davis. Unfortunately, the Lions offense couldn’t make anything of it. After a couple big plays, Stafford scrambled and dropped the ball for Detroit’s second turnover of the game, and essentially putting an end to any realistic fourth-quarter heroics.
Detroit’s defense did respond with another three-and-out, but it was too little too late. The Lions were gifted a 56-yard pass interference penalty, but Stafford blew it with a goal-line interception, and the even the most optimistic fans were exiting the stadium.
The loss drops the Lions to 3-4 on the season, and perhaps more importantly, they’re just 1-3 in the conference, with losses to potential contenders—the Seahawks and Cowboys. These are the kind of losses that could really hurt come Wild Card playoff runs, but the Lions need to play better overall if they even want a chance to compete for a postseason spot.
Today, the Lions celebrate homecoming, as they will induct new members into their Lions Pride class. On the field, they’ll be facing a Seattle Seahawks team that is as hungry as they are. The Seahawks will be full strength, coming off their bye as healthy as can be expected this deep into the season. The Lions, too, are fairly healthy, but they’ll be missing Ezekiel Ansah for the sixth straight game.
Detroit Lions head coach Matt Patricia likes to say that you only have 16 games to prove your worth in the NFL, so every week counts the same. It’s a nice cliche—and technically he’s right—but the Lions’ Week 8 game is going to be quite the measuring stick for a team that has shown some clear inconsistencies through six games.
From 1990-2013, teams with a 4-3 record made the playoffs 50 percent of the time. On the other hand, teams with a 3-4 record made the playoffs just 19 percent of the time. If those odds hold true in today’s NFL, Sunday’s game could mean a whole lot more than just 1/16th of a season.
Detroit has just one conference win so far, and heading into Week 9 with losses to the Cowboys and Seahawks could make it very hard for this team to compete for a Wild Card spot down the line.
It all starts with the Seattle Seahawks, who have also climbed out of a slow start to pull themselves to .500 by Week 8. Seattle has survived the dismantling of the “Legion of Boom” and oddly turned Russell Wilson into a pocket passer. Still, Seattle is winning games like they always seemed to have: with a running game and a defense.
However, the Lions pose a pretty good threat to both of those things. While Detroit’s run defense has been one of the worst in the league through the first two months of the season, they just added one of the best run stuffers in the league by trading for Damon Harrison Sr. As for the Lions offense, they just seem to be hitting their stride now.
So here’s how to tune into this Week 8 important showdown between two NFC foes:
How to watch Lions-Seahawks
Date: Sunday, October 28, 2018
Time: 1 p.m. ET
Location: Ford Field—Detroit, MI
Week 8 TV Map: Courtesy of 506 Sports here
Announcers: Kevin Kugler, Ronde Barber, Chris Spielman, Shannon Spake
Online streaming: Fox Sports Go, Yahoo Sports app
Local radio: WJR-AM NEWS TALK 760
Radio announcers: Dan Miller, Lomas Brown
Odds: Lions by 3