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RedRamage

Lions at Vikings Game Thread

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3 minutes ago, RedRamage said:

I disagree that it was a complete fluke actually... if you look at the play, Cook still had control of the ball and likely would have gone to the ground with it if the defender hadn't popped in with his helmet hitting the ball.

they made a good hit but he doesn't fumble if he doesn't tear his acl.

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4 minutes ago, Who is the Drizzle? said:

they made a good hit but he doesn't fumble if he doesn't tear his acl.

Okay, gotcha... I agree.

I was saying that even with the ACL, it still was likely it would just be tackled.  The helmet-to-ball hit was needed (I think) to make the fumble.  But you are correct in saying that without the ACL, there's no fumble.

This is perhaps a perfect example of what I meant when I said that a defense can make it's own luck, to an extent.

The Lions got luck there was the freak injury... they took advantage of that and make it even better with a good hit on the ball.

Both parts were needed for the fumble:

  • Pure luck: ACL injury
  • Part luck/part skill: Hitting in the right way that knocked the ball lose.

 

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12 minutes ago, RedRamage said:

The Saints beat Carolina pretty good and hammered the Dolphins in London... of course the Dolphins also lost to the Jets so that probably isn't saying too much.  I don't think the Saints are going to be easy to beat... they aren't looking like a crap team, they'll be at home, they'll have a extra week to rest and prepare.

I'll feel better about it if the Lions can beat the Panthers and/or show some signs of life on the offense.

I don't know what their algorithm is, but as I understand it they have an elo rating for each team based on their past performance, and then predict based on the relative strengths of the teams plus home field advantage.

Lions 1565

Saints 1537

Panthers 1536

They have the Lions as better team than the Panthers and the Lions are home, so the combination of those factors gives the Lions a pretty good chance of winning (63%).

The Saints are ranked (marginally) higher than the Panthers, and are at home against the Lions, ergo they have better odds.  In fact, they give the Saints a 55% chance of winning.

The Saints projection implies they think home field is worth something like 40 elo points.  I think they had the Lions as a 48% chance to beat the Falcons, and the Falcons were the #2 team in elo at the time.

It is just one system.  They did project the Lions to finish 9-7 and I think they had the Giants at 6-10 before the season started, FWIW.

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1 hour ago, NYLion said:

Cook blowing out an ACL and subsequently fumbling the ball because he got injured leading to the Lions leading TD not only because of the turnover but taking Cook out of the game who was shredding the Lions previously, the Vikings missing an easy FG, the Vikings dropping the ball before being touched in wildcat formation were all extremely fortunate breaks for the Lions. Conversely, they were unlucky that Tate's knee touched right before the goal line last week. 

Every win counts the same but this one was gifted to them.  They won't win the turnover battle by multiple TO's every week.  The defense is good but again, and lets be honest, they were pretty fortunate to face two 40 year olds and Keenum 3 out of 4 weeks.  The offense on the other hand? LOTS of work to be done.  The positive is that they have been winning despite an impotent passing game.  You'd think that the passing game is going to break out eventually especially when Decker gets back.  Getting Davis back will be important too, the run defense has been lacking since his injury although Freeman and Cook will tear up just about any defense.

But these are the Lions. They lose this game, year in and year out. Take the win and think maybe this is the year? With a few breaks, we may win the division. A first round bye is almost like a playoff win.

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The two biggest difference this year to the vast majority of seasons in my lifetime are:

1. They are not beating themselves, and

2. They are letting the other team beat themselves.

And 2. may be redundant.  To quote Wes Westrum (albeit it was in regards to baseball), 'Most games are lost, not won.'

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14 minutes ago, Who is the Drizzle? said:

they made a good hit but he doesn't fumble if he doesn't tear his acl.

But the Lions showed an opportunstic defense that recovered the fumble. In years past, teams like Minnesota would have recovered their own fumble, picked it up and ran for a TD.

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2 minutes ago, Sports_Freak said:

But the Lions showed an opportunstic defense that recovered the fumble. In years past, teams like Minnesota would have recovered their own fumble, picked it up and ran for a TD.

In years past, the Lions would have gotten screwed by bad officiating and an obscure rule.

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Fumble recovery rate has been shown to be heavily influenced by luck. I’m not sure about forcing fumbles. I think that is typically caused more by the offense not taking care of the ball than it is the defense making a good hit. 

Game situation also helps. If you are playing with the lead, it’s easier to play more conservatively. Good teams play with the lead more often. 

There are different ways to look at this last game. On the one hand, the lions only had three drives that produced a decent scoring chance, and they got it done with two field goals and an 8 point TD. The Vikings had a touchdown drive and a missed field goal drive. They also had a first and goal where they got zero points. And that was all with the turnover margin favoring the lions. 

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The 4-0 Detroit Lions are on a march to an unbeaten season. Doubters get out of the way or get run over by the Lion Express

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Had Cook not been injured, he would have been in the game on the Vikings missed field goal drive and not gotten the great blitz pickup that the Vikings 3rd string RB got. Instead, Keenum is creamed and throws a pick six. The Lions get a TD instead of a FG and win 20-7. (no 2 pointer needed)

Really, the Vikings were really lucky that fumble happened to keep the game close. Nice job by the Lions overcoming that bad break and getting the W.

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1 minute ago, pyrotigers said:

Had Cook not been injured, he would have been in the game on the Vikings missed field goal drive and not gotten the great blitz pickup that the Vikings 3rd string RB got. Instead, Keenum is creamed and throws a pick six. The Lions get a TD instead of a FG and win 20-7. (no 2 pointer needed)

Really, the Vikings were really lucky that fumble happened to keep the game close. Nice job by the Lions overcoming that bad break and getting the W.

That seems... well... completely plausible.  You're right, that ACL tear couldn't have happened at a worse point for the Lions.  In fact, I beat the Vikings did it on purpose.  I wouldn't be shocked it Cook has his ACL surgically weakened prior to the game just in case he needed to tear it in a prime situation like this.

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1 hour ago, Who is the Drizzle? said:

they made a good hit but he doesn't fumble if he doesn't tear his acl.

Maybe and maybe not.  We will never know, but there was a pretty solid hit right at the ball...which is the main way defenses jar it loose.

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The offense was sputtering – but delivered a gutsy key drive for a TD when they needed it. The defense got some key stops when they needed it. The Lions did what they needed to win the game. Both teams had opportunities, but the Vikings blew theirs while the Lions capitalized where they could. The game was there for the taking, and the Lions took it. Minnesota didn't. Gotta credit them for the W.

IMO this is a better team than last year

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4 hours ago, number20 said:

The offense was sputtering – but delivered a gutsy key drive for a TD when they needed it. The defense got some key stops when they needed it. The Lions did what they needed to win the game. Both teams had opportunities, but the Vikings blew theirs while the Lions capitalized where they could. The game was there for the taking, and the Lions took it. Minnesota didn't. Gotta credit them for the W.

IMO this is a better team than last year

I agree with all of this.

That said, I seem to recall this kind of sentiment last year as the team turned the corner at 5-4, and rolled into NYC at 9-4, before hitting the ceiling. This year's team ceiling is clearly higher than last year's, but not if Stafford gets injured like he did last year. He got hammered yesterday, and even though they ran 31 times, they also dropped him back 31 times. Running game has to continue to improve. And they have to keep going to it even if they have plays that only get them a yard or two.

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I've been most impressed that they've won two games on the road where Stafford quite frankly looked average at best. 

It's a good sign that they can not only win away from home but still be able to do so even when their QB doesn't bring his A game.

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49 minutes ago, RandyMarsh said:

I've been most impressed that they've won two games on the road where Stafford quite frankly looked average at best. 

It's a good sign that they can not only win away from home but still be able to do so even when their QB doesn't bring his A game.

According to ESPN, Stafford was 22nd out of 30 QBs on Sunday. Grading on a curve, you are right - that is nowhere close to his A game. This is a tough team.

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Stafford hasn't been great this year but a lot of that has to do with receivers just not getting separation.    Stafford is not a guy that holds onto the ball for too long, hasn't been that in a long time.     He also hasn't been his best at all this year and they are still winning. 

 

This team just hangs around then they find ways.    They got outplayed a lot by Atlanta, but the defense was opportunistic and they hung around.  That game should have never come down to one play, Atlanta should have won it 35-17 or something close to that.   But that shows how resilient this team is...........that they can play like that (and the offense was bad vs. Minnesota) and still win or come close to it.    Just wait till the O-Line gels a little bit.    They really need to stay healthy on defense and especially at LB.    

This is still a fairly young team.  The vets are Stafford, Wagner and TJ Lang and they aren't going anywhere soon.   (Left out Ngata, he's a placeholder).   Some are saying Tabor is a bust -  but we didn't see much of Slay his first year either,  DBs take a little longer, it's a hard position to play in the NFL.   

Give Quinn two more drafts and we may be seeing something we never dreamed of here.

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8 hours ago, Motor City Sonics said:

Give Quinn two more drafts and we may be seeing something we never dreamed of here.

Not to be a debbie downer here, but let's not get too far ahead of ourselves... I like what we've seen so far from Quinn's drafts, but it's too early to really have a complete grade on the draft picks.

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11 hours ago, Motor City Sonics said:

Stafford hasn't been great this year but a lot of that has to do with receivers just not getting separation.    Stafford is not a guy that holds onto the ball for too long, hasn't been that in a long time.     He also hasn't been his best at all this year and they are still winning. 

 

This team just hangs around then they find ways.    They got outplayed a lot by Atlanta, but the defense was opportunistic and they hung around.  That game should have never come down to one play, Atlanta should have won it 35-17 or something close to that.   But that shows how resilient this team is...........that they can play like that (and the offense was bad vs. Minnesota) and still win or come close to it.    Just wait till the O-Line gels a little bit.    They really need to stay healthy on defense and especially at LB.    

This is still a fairly young team.  The vets are Stafford, Wagner and TJ Lang and they aren't going anywhere soon.   (Left out Ngata, he's a placeholder).   Some are saying Tabor is a bust -  but we didn't see much of Slay his first year either,  DBs take a little longer, it's a hard position to play in the NFL.   

Give Quinn two more drafts and we may be seeing something we never dreamed of here.

Stafford's play in Minny is excused IMO. 

 
His LT is a disaster. They are having to use RBs to chip the DE and he can't let plays develop because the O-Line was getting him killed. 
 
Add to that little to no separation from the receivers, and Stafford was in a tough spot (although he definitely missed some passes). 

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26 minutes ago, 313DetroitCity said:

Stafford's play in Minny is excused IMO. 

 
His LT is a disaster. They are having to use RBs to chip the DE and he can't let plays develop because the O-Line was getting him killed. 
 
Add to that little to no separation from the receivers, and Stafford was in a tough spot (although he definitely missed some passes). 

I think he got very lucky he wasn't pick-6'd twice.     He did not have a good game and even he said it.  But he still keeps his cool, no matter what.   Guys have bad games, especially on the road against a good defense.    But they won, so technically he had a great game. 

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The bad news for the Vikings is that they will not be above 8-8 this year now because we all know that Stafford can't win on the road against good teams.

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