Detroit’s Offense Falls Flat as No Liftoff Happened in Houston!
Detroit in Houston this week looked like the same team that walked into Chicago earlier this season. The offensive line was allowing pressure with the run game to become non-existent. Stafford made some bad throws and receivers dropped easy passes. The defense was picked apart without Darius Slay and penalties killed the team again. Check out how it all went down below.
Matt Stafford didn’t have his best game. There were many throws that weren’t accurate and he was inconsistent. He ended up going 27 for 41 for 240 yards and a touchdown. This game certainly didn’t help his MVP talks as he might start slipping further down the list.
Theo Riddick returned and the rushing game didn’t really improve. Riddick ended with 11 carries for 56 yards. Zach Zenner had three carries for two yards as well. No holes were there for the team and Forsett never saw the field, so Zenner is the backup behind Riddick for the time being.
Receivers had issues they have been having all season and that is drop balls. Ebron, Riddick, Tate each had a drop today. Riddick lead the team in catches, while Ebron was one behind, and both were active in their first game back. Ebron had 79 yards while Riddick had 88 yards and a touchdown. Golden Tate had seven catches for 42 yards, but Marvin Jones was quiet again, getting only three catches for 33 yards.
The offensive line for Detroit wasn’t that well today. Riley Reiff dealt with an illness that kept him on the sidelines at times, so Cornelius Lucas got some playing time and he didn’t do well. The rushing attack only had 58 yards on the ground as at times the defensive tackles were in the backfield as the play happened. They did only allow one sack though, so take that for what you will.
The defensive line was up against a banged up offensive line and while they could get to the quarterback a few times, the run game was still in charge with over 100 yards on the ground. Kerry Hyder had four tackles, one for a loss. Haloti Ngata missed the game this week, so Stefan Charles got some more playing time and he ended with three tackles. Khyri Thornton had three tackles and a sack. A’Shawn Robinson had four tackles and a sack. Armonty Bryant got a sack as well, he has been a quiet acquisition by the team.
The linebacking core got picked apart. Josh Bynes returned and while he is better in coverage than Kyle Van Noy, he didn’t look good today. C.J. Fiedorowicz trucked him to knock him down to get open for the touchdown. Bynes ended up with three tackles. Whitehead lead the unit in tackles with seven. Antwione Williams had four tackles, one for loss.
The secondary was getting targeted heavily with Darius Slay out. Johnson Bademosi got the start in place of Slay. While he was beat and looked like the special teams player he is, he was able to get three tackles, two pass deflections and an interception. Nevin Lawson had three tackles and pass deflection as he improved his game, while Quandre Diggs had three tackles. Tavon Wilson lead the team in tackles with nine and had a tackle for loss.
Special Teams had a hiccup. Matt Prater went 2/3 on field goals, his longest from 47, but his one miss was from 49 yards out. Sam Martin had five punts for 223 yards. Andre Roberts had three punt returns for five yards and four kick returns for 92 yards. He had one return near the 50 yard line, but it was called back due to a holding penalty.
Week Eight: What it Means
Detroit lost to another team that they should have beat. The offense with Riddick and Ebron returning, was thought to explode on the scene, yet they were quiet and could only put up 13 points. The defense was getting an upgrade technically with Josh Bynes back, but he didn’t seem to help the case that much.
Detroit should hope for a Green Bay and Minnesota loss, even if it means cheering for the Bears. Detroit slipped up and will be asking for some help in Chicago and Atlanta.
Riley Reiff missed some of the game due to an illness and Cornelius Lucas was in his place and he didn’t impress. This shows that if Reiff or Decker go down, Detroit is screwed at the tackle position. Detroit should look at the draft for a possible better backup.
What Eight: What to Think About
DeAndre Hopkins appeared to fumble the ball in the third quarter, but the officials ruled it an incomplete pass. Watching the replay it was close, but could have been ruled a fumble. Jim Caldwell didn’t challenge it and luckily the defense held up. Caldwell was lucky to get bailed out by his team, but who is to say he won’t take a risk like that in the future and it ends up hurting him? Jim Caldwell also did an onside kick with 2:52 left in the game, which is early for a team to do that and gave the Texans easy field position who were able to kick a field goal to close the game out.
Detroit should also start looking at a cornerback in the upcoming free agency and draft. If one of those other cornerbacks get hurt, Detroit will have Adairius Barnes come in and that would be a bigger disadvantage than Bademosi. Detroit needs depth at the position so for future situations like this, they aren’t panicking.
Dwayne Washington was healthy this week and ended up getting scratched. Justin Forsett got in over him and you have to wonder why he was playing over Washington, who impressed in the preseason and did average during the regular season. Detroit would never have four active running backs, but to pick Forsett over Washington was surprising. Zach Zenner was the obvious choice to get benched, but not according to Jim Caldwell.