A big step backward
The 27-10 loss to the Cleveland Browns on Saturday night was not a step in the right direction for the Lions. Imagine it was a long and possibly very quiet bus ride back to Allen Park afterward.
The Lions got beat soundly on offense, defense and special teams. Penalties were an issue for the second straight week. The offense couldnt find a rhythm and the defense allowed the Browns to score on their first three possessions (one touchdown, two field goals). Throw in the punt return for a touchdown and Detroit was down 20-0 in the first quarter. Thats Detroits starting offense against the Browns starting defense. Thats a little scary. After all, these are the Browns.
Matthew Stafford started, but looked like a rookie against Clevelands No. 1 defense. He was 5 of 13 for 34 yards. His first pass was intercepted and returned for a touchdown. This week he could get nothing going to get past that. He threw a few high passes and had a few dropped by John Standeford. Veteran Daunte Culpepper looked more in control and Drew Stanton impressed in mop-up duty.
Jobs are on the line, but it seemed no one stepped up. Wide receiver Dane Looker, who signed on Monday, caught a few nice passes. Rookie linebacker Deandre Levy made a few noteworthy plays on special teams and defense.
The Lions starting offensive line did give Stafford and Culpepper some time, but neither was able to do much with it.
Its just the second preseason game, but more was expected all the way around on this one. It will be interesting to see how coach Jim Schwartz and this squad handle the adversity that goes hand in hand with a loss such as this one.
Theres plenty of work to do before the Lions play Indianapolis on Saturday at Ford Field.