Detroit Lions Week 5: Game ball candidates after loss to New England Patriots

The Detroit Lions Week 5 performance was putrid. There wasn't much that went right for the team, but we tried to find some silver linings in our game ball handouts.

The Detroit Lions Week 5 performance was an embarrassment on the road, losing to the New England Patriots, 29-0. To add insult to injury, the Patriots were starting 3rd string rookie quarterback, Bailey Zappe, making his first career start. Nothing went right for the Lions all game. On offense, they moved the ball okay, but failed to score on all 7 of their drives in New England territory. They even gave up a fumble returned for a touchdown on one of their drives. For another week, the Lions' defense looked like one of the worst in the NFL. They did improve and force one punt (not counting when the Patriots kneeled) and did grab an interception. But still, an unacceptable performance against a 4th round rookie. In this pitiful performance, here is which Lions' stunk the least.

Who deserves game-ball considerations in the Detroit Lions Week 5 loss?

Craig Reynolds

Craig Reynolds had a major mistake that likely cost the Lions points. On a 3rd and 2 at the Patriots' 25, Reynolds bobbled the handoff and ran backward for a loss of 7. On the edge of field goal range, the Lions went for it, and Jared Goff fumbled for a Patriots TD. That big mistake aside, Reynolds had an efficient day filling in. He had a nice 19-yard run in the first half, and in the second, he took a screen pass for 36. All in all, Reynolds picked up 92 yards on 9 touches. Not a particularly great game, but after this week, there weren't many options.

Josh Reynolds

Josh Reynolds continues to be Jared Goff's favorite target. This week, he led the team in targets with 10, and he made some things happen. He grabbed six of his targets for 92 yards including a great catch on a go route down the sideline. Reynolds did also have a bad drop at the beginning of the game. He was open on a crossing route for a pretty big gain, but just let the ball go right through his fingers. Reynolds needs to clean up the drops, but it's scary to think how bad the Lions' offense would've been without him.

DeShon Elliott

DeShon Elliott was one of the players in the secondary replaced after last week. However, he was quickly reinserted in the lineup after Savion Smith went out with a scary neck injury. Elliott stepped in nicely and grabbed a nice interception on a tipped pass. It was a great job by Elliot to get his arms under the ball to grab a rare stop for the defense. On top of that, Elliott led the team with 10 tackles despite missing some time with cramps. It’s never a great sign when the safety leads the team in tackles, but can’t blame Elliott for making them.

Winner: DeShon Elliott

Elliott gets the win here as he was the least negative player for the Lions on the day. Despite being benched, Elliott has been solid all year. He is not a lockdown cover guy, but he is a sound tackler and generally does his job. He also had probably the only defensive highlight in the past two weeks grabbing the tip-drill interception. Hopefully, after the bye, the Lions can regroup, and there will be more competition for the game ball.


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