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Detroit Lions vs. Kansas City Chiefs Player of the Game: 5 Game Ball candidates

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A look at the best performances from the Lions’ Week 4 loss.

Kansas City Chiefs v Detroit Lions Photo by Leon Halip/Getty Images

The Detroit Lions took the Kansas City Chiefs to the wire, but ended up coming just short with a 34-30 loss.

The game wasn’t without some heroic performances from the Lions point of view. So let’s take a look at the five best players from Detroit and hand out a game ball.

Reminder: First place in voting receives three points, second place gets two, third place gets one.

Here’s how our Game Ball standings look through three games.

Game ball standings through Week 3:

T.J. Hockenson - 3
Kenny Golladay - 3
Matthew Stafford - 3
Marvin Jones Jr. - 3
Jamal Agnew - 2
Tyrell Crosby - 2
Devon Kennard - 1
Taylor Decker - 1

Onto this week’s candidates:

Matthew Stafford

Stats: 21/34 for 291 yards, 3 TDs, 118.6 passer rating

On a normal day, Stafford’s impressive statline alone would be enough to give him Game Ball consideration. On a day in which a hip injury flared up and reportedly a considerable amount of pain, this was a Michael Jordan Flu Game-esque performance. Stafford was lights out for nearly the entire game, and he out-dueled the NFL’s reigning MVP.

He’ll rightfully get criticized for his red zone fumble, but it was truly an incredible performance from the Lions quarterback. Just look at this throw, man:

Had the defense not blown the game at the end, we’d be talking about yet another fourth-quarterback comeback drive for Stafford and company.

Kenny Golladay

Stats: 5 catches, 67 yards, 2 TDs

When the Lions needed a big play, they targeted Kenny Golladay, who was masterful in the red zone. He very nearly came down with at third touchdown of the game, but ultra-slow motion caught a slight bobble before he landed out of bounds.

He rebounded with an amazing toe-tapping catch that put the Lions ahead late. Again, we would be singing his praises had the Lions defense just put the game away.

Justin Coleman

Stats: 4 tackles 2 passes defended

Coleman is single-handedly responsible for four points in the Lions favor. By punching out this ball to Sammy Watkins, he prevented a touchdown and forced the Chiefs to settle for a field goal.

Coleman continues a strong start to the season, and he was partially responsible for the Lions’ decent coverage on the day. Patrick Mahomes completed just 57.1 percent of his passes on Sunday, which is the second-lowest of his career.

Coleman was also responsible for part of FUMBLEMANIA, forcing a fumble on Watkins and recovering it all in one fell swoop.

Kerryon Johnson

Stats: 26 carries, 125 yards, 1 fumble; 2 catches, 32 yards

Like Stafford, Johnson’s performance may have been overshadowed by his goal-line fumble that turned out to be a costly 14-point swing. However, Johnson was the reason the Lions kept Mahomes off the field for much of the day.

His 26 carries were a career high for him, and he was just as effective in the second half (14 carries, 60 yards) as he was in the first (12 carries, 65 yards).

After three slow starts to the season, this was a big breakout game for Johnson.

Mike Ford

Stats: 3 tackles

It wasn’t a big statistical day for Mike Ford, but being thrown to the wolves after Darius Slay’s injury is no easy task. He responded by contributing to one of Patrick Mahomes’ worst career stat lines. Ford even fought off injury midway through the game and came back.

The Lions pass defense was far from perfect, but they prevented any deep throws for the first time in Mahomes’ career and they kept Kansas City out of the end zone through the air.

Poll

Who gets the game ball?

This poll is closed

  • 49%
    Matthew Stafford
    (576 votes)
  • 5%
    Kenny Golladay
    (66 votes)
  • 34%
    Justin Coleman
    (399 votes)
  • 6%
    Kerryon Johnson
    (78 votes)
  • 3%
    Mike Ford
    (38 votes)
1157 votes total Vote Now