Ameer Abdullah’s First NFL Carry
It’s the opening drive for the Lion’s 2016 NFL campaign, and the Lions are in Chargers territory, 24 yards from the goal line. The Lions go up to the line with Stafford under center, Lance Moore, Eric Ebron, and Golden Tate in a three receiver bunch to the left, Ameer Abdullah seven yards straight away from the ball, and Calvin Johnson split out to the right.
At the beginning of the cadence, Ebron motions out of the bunch into an ACE RIGHT look and then the ball is snapped. The play is a running back dive right, and all five offensive lineman and Ebron all wash the defensive line down towards the direction of the play. On this specific play, the Chargers have no defensive lineman lined up on either side of Travis Swanson, creating a large gap up the middle of the defense. Seeing this space, Abdullah quickly changes his path and cuts up the center of the field. Laken Tomlinson climbs up to the second level and makes a key block on linebacker Manti Teo. Abdullah is bursting up the field now with only one man standing in his way of the end zone.
That player is all-pro safety Eric Weddle, one of the most consistent and respected safeties in the NFL. Abdullah makes him look like a J.V. high school benchwarmer. With just the slightest fake to the right, he freezes Weddle, then he bursts left and poor Weddle doesn’t even lay a finger on him. Abdullah strolls into the end-zone with his first career NFL touchdown on his first career NFL carry.
This is my favorite play because it was at this time in the season that we never even pondered the possibility of starting 1-7, or having a bottom three offensive line and running attack. It was at this time that we all though playoffs was the floor, and that this second round draft pick was Barry Sanders re-incarnated.
If Ameer Abdullah can fix his fumbling issue due to his Donald Trump hands, he could be an explosive weapon for the Lions this season. He was just a rookie last year, and it’s obvious to any football fan that he has talent. Hopefully he puts it all together, and the rest of the league will know to #FearAmeer.
Ameer Abdullah Sticks it to Green Bay
With the score tied at a lowly three points at the beginning of the second half, Ameer Abdullah lay in wait on a cold day in Lambeau.
It was Week Ten and every fan knew that the Lions were likely looking at another loss to add to their 1-7 Record. Abdullah had a different plan. He took the kick about five yards deep and found a key block at the fifteen to outrun a large majority of the Packer defense. He was even able to make up for his lack of top speed by angling left to gain an additional twenty before finally just missing the end zone as he sprawled out to land on the one. It was the first time all season I jumped off of my couch in joy and it led to so much more.
It was not only an important play for Ameer, to me it was a play that turned the season around. Who knows what would have happened if he didn’t get the offense set up on the one, but that return made Stafford & Co.’s job much easier than it had been for the first thirty minutes. They finally found the end zone for the first time in the game which turned out to be step one in doing the impossible. Winning a god damn game in Green Bay for the since 1991.
After eight weeks of suffering and going into the bye on the tail end of an embarrassing showing in London, that win felt special. Not just because it snapped 24 years of frustration, but because it jump started the players to finish the season with a strong showing. I just don’t think any of that happens without AA’s return heroics.
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