Detroit Improves To 2-0 With A Home Win Against New York.
Lions vs. Jets was the highlight in Detroit on Saturday, as the Lions made their home debut. After coming off an impressive win over the Colts in week one, the kool-aid was getting passed around Detroit as fans jumped on the Kenny Golladay train and believed that the defense did improve. Injuries to defensive end Kerry Hyder and linebacker Brandon Copeland scared fans as they feared for the worst before the season even began. Detroit was able to put up another winning performance on Saturday and brew up more kool-aid for their fans.
Matt Stafford had a complete 180 from last week. While there was another drop that was popped up and could have been an interception, the Jets messed up that opportunity. Stafford was able to throw a dime touchdown to Marvin Jones and finish the day 8/10 for 84 yards and one touchdown. Jake Rudock had a good week one, and a bad week two, finishing 8/13 for 84 yards and an interception. Brad Kayaa went 4/7 for 38 yards.
The rushing game existed somewhat for the Lions, finishing with 70 yards on the ground. Stafford was able to set up some pass plays based off the run, something that wasn’t possible last season. Dwayne Washington finished as the leading rusher with eight carries for 24 yards, while starter Ameer Abdullah finished with four carries for 16 yards. Tion Green also had eight carries, but only for 14 yards.
Marvin Jones was the main man this week, getting four catches for 34 yards and a touchdown, after recovering from a drop earlier in the game. Golden Tate had two catches for 34 yards and a drop as well, something all the wide receivers need to work on. TJ Jones had one catch for 11 yards as the number three wide receiver and the hype train for Kenny Golladay cooled as he finished with only one catch for six yards. Jace Billingsley had three catches for 29 yards, as he looked like a Golden Tate clone out there, and rookie tight end Michael Roberts had two catches for 29 yards.
TJ Lang made his debut for the Lions and did well with only one noticeable mistake. Left guard Graham Glasgow struggled somewhat last week, improved and looked better besides one hiccup play. Greg Robinson looked good again at left tackle, while Cyrus Kuondijo struggled with a holding penalty and was spun around on one play. The Jets had eight sacks in their first game of the preseason, today they were held to just three.
The defensive line looked strong again, even without starting end Kerry Hyder. Anthony Zettel started last week in place for Ansah, who likely won’t play a snap this preseason, and did well with two tackles. Akeem Spence did well with his time on the field, getting two tackles and a sack. Cornelius Washington started in place for Hyder and made his debut and landed a shot on Christan Hackenberg. The line ended up with two sacks total and 85 rushing yards allowed.
— Russell Brown (@RussNFLDraft) August 19, 2017
Jarrad Davis did well again this week, getting two tackles and playing well in space. The linebackers did well in coverage as well, allowing one tight end catch for only 12 yards, and only allowing running back Bilal Powell to catch two passes for 14 yards. Another rookie linebacker Jalen Reeves-Maybin looked well despite only getting one tackle. Paul Worrilow seemed to be a good depth linebacker addition, getting three tackles.
The Jets weren’t allowed to throw the ball in Detroit, as the Lions defensive backs allowed 165 yards through the air. D.J. Hayden had a tackle and a pass deflection, and Nevin Lawson had a pass deflection as well. Jamal Agnew was the main cornerback tonight, leading the team in tackles with seven and getting a pass deflection as he was targeted heavily in the second half, and while he did allow a few completions, he did well with the competition. Miles Killebrew started with Tavon Wilson sitting, and he finished with three tackles, one for loss. Charles Washington was able to get a sack as well and Rolan Milligan got a late interception.
Special Teams were impressive again, Matt Prater ended with 3/3 on field goal attempts, his longest from 50 yards out. Punter Kasey Redfern was solid again, punting six times for 266 yards, two landing inside the 20. TJ Jones was the main punt returner, getting three returns for 18 yards, while rookie Jamal Agnew had one return for six yards and Keshawn Martin had one for 22 yards. Keshawn Martin was the only one returning kicks, getting two for 60 yards.
Preseason Week 2: What It Means
TJ Lang coming back means he is close to returning 100 percent, which is good news for Lions fans. He should be ready to go in full capacity by the season opener.
Kenny Golladay practiced with the first team once last week, and played with them on one drive, but never got a look from Stafford. TJ Jones had one catch and returned more punts, so if he does lose the number three wide receiver job, he could possibly stay as the main punt returner.
Detroit was able to create pressure with many different guys, something that wasn’t popular in 2016 as Kerry Hyder and A’Shawn Robinson were the main two linemen that could get to the quarterback and create pressure more than anyone else.
Preseason Week 2: What To Think About
Two drops in the first quarter for Detroit and both from veteran receivers, Marvin Jones and Golden Tate. Detroit dropping the ball on offense was one of the main issues last season, and with it continuing so far in the preseason isn’t a good look.
Producing turnovers was an issue for the defense in Detroit last season and like the drops on the offense, it showed again on Saturday. Detroit was able to recover a fumble on a missed punt return for the Jets and get a late game interception but missed out on two more fumble recoveries and an interception that was dropped by Glover Quin. If Detroit wants to win more games, or more games without having to pull a fourth quarter comeback, getting those turnovers and scoring on drives off those turnovers are things that they need to do.
Detroit has done well in its first two games, but the competition hasn’t been the greatest. Luckily for them, they play the defending Super Bowl champion New England Patriots next week, and that is the week where the starters play the most. That will give Detroit a good check on how they are with the best of the best, as a possible full half of Stafford vs. Brady could be entertaining.