Detroit Lions Strategy And Personnel 10-4-11
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–SS Erik Coleman (ankle) appears to be lost for an extended period of time. Starting SS Amari Spievey (hamstring) is going to be day-to-day this week. So, it’s a pretty good bet the Lions will be looking to add a veteran safety to the roster. John Wendling finished the game and played well opposite FS Louis Delmas.
–DE Kyle Vanden Bosch had his sack streak stopped at three games, but he did throw a monster block to spring CB Chris Houston on a 56-yard pick-six. “I don’t think we get the score without that block,” coach Jim Schwartz said. Vanden Bosch appeared to take out three Cowboys on the play.
–OLB Justin Durant missed the game with a concussion, but coach Jim Schwartz said on Monday that he expected Durant to return to practice and be ready to play on Monday.
–CB Alphonso Smith was active for the first time this season but did not take a defensive snap. He is currently the fifth cornerback behind starters Chris Houston and Eric Wright, and nickel backs Brandon McDonald and Aaron Berry.
–WR Rashied Davis (foot) was examined by specialist Dr. Bob Anderson on Friday and was told surgery would not be required. The Lions have not added another receiver, so the hope is that Davis can get back either this week or next.
REPORT CARD vs. COWBOYS
B-minus – It was mighty shaky early. QB Matthew Stafford insisted there was no additional anxiety playing in front of his family and friends in his hometown, but he was as erratic throwing the ball as he’s been in three seasons. He missed 14 of his first 25 attempts, and one was picked off by Gerald Sensabaugh. But he righted himself, and the offense, in the fourth quarter throwing for 121 yards and a pair of touchdowns.
C – Jahvid Best, as a runner, may not be what the Lions thought he was going to be. As a multi-purpose back, he’s very solid. As a runner, he’s not showing the quickness or the burst he showed early last season. He gained 19 yards on the first play and 28 the rest of the game (10 carries). Keiland Williams played most of the snaps on the final two drives.
B – For the first time this season, the Lions struggled to get pressure on a quarterback. Their one sack came with 30 seconds left in the game. Tony Romo picked them apart in the first half, but again, adjustments were made and they found a way to shut him down. Bobby Carpenter and Chris Houston had pick-sixes, and Stephen Tulloch’s interception set up the game-winning drive.
B – The highlight was a goal-line stand. DT Ndamukong Suh collapsed the middle of the line on a fourth-and-goal from the 1 and OLB Ashlee Palmer made the tackle. The Cowboys averaged 4.2 per carry, but again, the Lions got the stops when they needed them.
C – The coverage units continue to scuffle. DE Sean Lissemore picked up a miss-hit kickoff by Jason Hanson (he slipped on his approach to the ball) and rumbled 38 yards to set up a score. Dwayne Harris had a 32-yard kickoff return. Hanson, though, continues to be money on field goals; he kicked two more and is 10-for-10 on the season.
A – Jim Schwartz had to go a little nuclear at half time but he got his team’s attention. Carpenter called the halftime chat “rambunctious.” Adjustments were minimal but effective. They simplified things on defense. They didn’t blitz as much and played more basic than they had early. Offensively, the offensive line stepped up and started giving Stafford more time.
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