The Detroit Lions laid the smackdown on the Broncos
The Detroit Lions were coming into a “must-win” game against the Denver Broncos on Saturday night. With the layout of their next three games–two with Minnesota and traveling to Dallas–securing this win was of utmost importance. The Broncos for their part came in having won six of their last seven, so it would not be an easy task. Yet, they dominated in all phases of the game and came one game closer to a playoff berth and a division championship.
Strong second quarter propels Lions
The Lions came into the game needing to make a statement, of sorts. And, they came out and started tossing the rock around. Yet, Jared Goff continued to be underwhelming, at least to start the game. Isaiah Buggs got a huge fumble recovery on the Broncos' first drive, which the Lions were not able to capitalize on and the teams continued to trade punts throughout the rest of the first quarter.
Continuing their drive that ended the first quarter, the Lions were able to break through the 0-0 tie when Goff found rookie stud Sam LaPorta for a touchdown strike. The Lions' defense played inspired on the following drive, which ended in a Josh Paschal sack of Wilson to force the three-and-out. The Lions marched right down the field where Goff found Jahmyr Gibbs for their second score of the game. The Lions ended the half with an Amon-Ra St. Brown touchdown, forcing the Broncos into the locker room scoreless and only 75 total yards.
Lions stay aggressive and seal the deal
The Broncos sustained their opening drive of the third quarter that ended in a touchdown from Russell Wilson to Lil'Jordan Humphrey on third-and-goal. Jahmyr took over on the Lions' opening drive, highlighted by a 34-yard scamper that nearly found pay dirt, leading to the Lions' touchdown, once again by rookie phenom Sam LaPorta. The defense held on the next drive as the Broncos to a field goal with less than a minute left in the third quarter.
The Lions marched right down the field to start the fourth quarter, capped by a Jahmyr Gibbs touchdown, adding to his spectacular rookie season. That drive all but sinched the game for the Lions, especially with the Broncos unable to keep pace in the second half and completely unable to get any type of stop on defense whatsoever. The Broncos did get a garbage-time touchdown but failed to recover the onside kick which all but sealed the game. Just for good measure, Goff found LaPorta for the third time on fourth down for his third touchdown of the game.
The bottom line
This was the performance we needed from the Lions. With a few iffy performances over their last few games, this was the correct response. They were aggressive on both sides of the football, put Russell Wilson on his back constantly, and ultimately showed which team was the better team at Ford Field tonight.