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Sunday, December 22, 2013 is a big day inside of Ford Field. Eli Manning and the New York Football Giants are in town for an absolute must win game for the Detroit Lions. In a disappointing five game stretch that has seen only one win for the Lions, this truly is do or die; with a little help. First and foremost, the Lions need to help themselves and play smart football. The Giants are a team who is struggling this season, but they are always dangerous.
In what could turn out to be a battle of turnovers, Manning pits his 25 interceptions against Stafford’s 17. Andre Brown comes in averaging just south of 75 rushing yards per game against a very stout Detroit front line that has them ranked as the number four defense against the run. While the passing defense is on the other end of the barrel, Eli Manning is having his worst year since his rookie campaign with a 69.7 QB Rating and throwing the most interceptions of his career; not to mention they are without Victor Cruz after undergoing knee surgery this week.
Detroit’s offense should be able to move the ball if they can make sure to…wait for it…get out of their own way. We certainly have been saying that a lot these past few weeks haven’t we? The Giants can get to the quarterback totaling 37 sacks thus far which could cause problems for the young offensive line of the Lions and force Stafford to get rid of the ball before plays can fully develop. When the high powered offense of Detroit is firing on all eight cylinders (8, not 4, Reggie) like they were on Thanksgiving, they showed how hard they are to stop with all of the fire power they possess. Touchdown machine Joseph Fauria will get the start at the Tight End spot with Brandon Pettigrew getting hurt on Monday Night against the Baltimore Ravens. For the Detroit Lions to win this game they need to play angry yet efficient football. Nick Fairley, we love you, but a great play followed up with a boneheaded play isn’t very effective.
With Philadelphia looking to bounce back from a tough loss against the Vikings last week and the Packers still without Aaron Rodgers, this week has been set up to help the Lions make that final postseason push they need to. Needless to say, all Lions fans will be rooting for a State of Pennsylvania sweep on Sunday, and who really wants to hear Trent Dilfer talk about the Lions “throwing up on themselves” again? Not me.
Detroit Lions: Sam Martin (P), Rashean Mathis (Q), Chris Houston (Q), Louis Delmas (P), Darius Slay (Q), DeAndre Levy (Q), Calvin Johnson (Q), Brandon Pettigrew (O)
New York Giants: Victor Cruz (O), Jason Pierre-Paul (O), Peyton Hillis (O), Terrell Thomas (P), Cooper Taylor (O), Trumaine McBride (P), Cullen Jenkins (P), Jerrel Jernigan (Q)