Seattle punter Michael Dickson took the snap and drifted across the back of the end zone, content to take a safety in the final minutes with his team up by 14.
When nobody came all that close to him, he ran 9 yards for a first down.
That was the final indignity for the Detroit Lions in a 28-14 loss to the Seahawks on Sunday. Detroit had won three of four and looked like a team that was making progress, but the Lions gave their home crowd little to cheer about against Seattle, falling behind in the second quarter and then making too many mistakes to rally.
“Had a little bit of success early in the game, but doesn’t matter,” Detroit coach Matt Patricia said. “We’ve got to stay focused for the entire game and play 60 minutes. As the head coach, that’s my job.”
Detroit turned over the ball three times and was outrushed 176-34. The latter stat was significant because the Lions added defensive tackle Damon Harrison during the week in a trade with the New York Giants.
Detroit’s first turnover came immediately after Seattle tied the game at 7 in the second quarter. Ameer Abdullah fumbled on the ensuing kickoff return, and the Seahawks quickly took the lead.
Down 28-14 in the fourth, the Lions crossed midfield with plenty of time remaining, but quarterback Matthew Stafford had to scramble a bit and lost the ball. Seattle (4-3) recovered that fumble, too.
Detroit got the ball back and drove to the red zone, only for Stafford to throw a pass that was intercepted at the 1-yard line.
“Fumble, I’ll have to look at. Obviously I got loose with it and had one hand on it. Should have two. If I have two, probably don’t fumble it,” Stafford said. “And then the interception, just a bad decision.”
It was probably the ugliest defeat for the Lions since their 48-17 loss to the New York Jets in the season opener. Detroit has only forced six turnovers all season. The Lions hadn’t committed many since that game against the Jets, but the three Sunday were too tough to overcome.
“We can’t have turnovers in any phase. It doesn’t really matter,” Patricia said. “We’re certainly not getting any on defense either, so we’re not helping ourselves. So, in general overall, the turnover situation (was) not good enough here today. We have to get more, we have to generate more on defense, and we can’t give them up here, special teams or offensively.”
Both the Lions and Seahawks came into this game at .500, but it didn’t look like a very even matchup. Detroit (3-4) is now in last place in the NFC North, with a tough matchup at Minnesota next weekend.
“I just hope that everybody comes in on Monday locked in. From this day forward, Monday, everybody comes locked in every Monday and getting ready to play,” defensive lineman Ricky Jean Francois said. “You play this game five to six times before you play it on the actual day. Mentally, physically, you’re going to play this game multiple times. I don’t know, their focus is killing me, that’s the only thing I can think off of my head, that we weren’t focused.”
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