SEATTLE (AP) — A season that appeared so promising a month ago ended with an offensive whimper for the Detroit Lions and extended the franchise’s history of playoff futility.
Detroit, which lost its final three regular-season games and had not won a playoff game since the 1991 season, failed to score a touchdown in a 26-6 loss to the Seattle Seahawks on Saturday night in the wild-card round.
The Lions (9-8), whose two-game lead in the NFC North slipped away over the final three games, were unable to muster a consistent attack from the onset against the Seahawks. Detroit also was penalized seven times for 68 yards.
It was the ninth straight postseason loss for the Lions, whose last road playoff victory was in 1957 at San Francisco en route to winning the NFL championship. Detroit’s last playoff win was 38-6 at home over Dallas in the divisional round on Jan. 5, 1992.
Detroit’s first four possessions netted 77 yards, resulting in three punts and an incomplete pass on fourth-and-1 from the Seattle 38. The Lions finally got on the board with 25 seconds left in the first half when Matt Prater’s 51-yard field goal capped a seven-play, 42-yard drive to cut the Seahawks lead to 10-3.
The Lions’ defense, which allowed 42 and 31 points in the previous two losses, forced a punt on the opening possession of the second half.
Detroit took over at its own 4 and marched to the Seattle 35, before Matthew Stafford’s pass for Golden Tate on third-and-2 sailed high.
The Lions settled for Prater’s 53-yarder to make it 10-6 with 4:08 left in the third quarter, but Seattle answered with a 10-play, 66-yard drive culminating in Steven Hauschka’s 27-yard field goal to push the lead to 13-6 early in the fourth quarter.
Detroit punted on each of its next two possessions, and Seattle responded with touchdown drives of 82 and 84 yards, leaving old Kezar Stadium in San Francisco as the site of the Lions’ last playoff road win.
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