Jeremy Ross’ amazing game Sunday has been overshadowed by the Lions’ collapse and 34-20 loss to the Eagles at Philadelphia.
That’s too bad. It was just two months to the day that the Lions had signed
Ross to the practice squad. On Oct. 19 he was moved up to the 53-man roster.
In the loss Sunday, Ross had a 58-yard punt return for a touchdown followed by a 98-yard kickoff return for a score. Both of them through about six inches of snow and 11 Eagles’ defenders. On the first one he fell to the ground and made a snow angel in the end zone.
Ross seemed to find his footing while other Lions struggled.
He also was credited with a special teams tackle on a return by DeSean Jackson.
It was the first time since 1979 that a Lion had returned a punt and a kickoff for a touchdown. That was Eddie Payton (Walter’s brother) who accomplished it against the Vikings.
In 2004 Eddie Drummond returned a punt for a touchdown — that was the last time one of the Lions had accomplished that feat until Sunday.
Ross has five catches for 59 yards including his first NFL touchdown on Thanksgiving in the win over the Packers. He also gained 24 yards on an end-around scamper that day.
Ross was not an offensive target on Sunday.
Ross’ return abilities impressed the Lions so much that they released Micheal Spurlock on Saturday. Ross’ ability to return and serve as a wide receiver gave him the edge.
Ross was cut by the Packers on Sept. 23 after he committed a crucial fumble on a kickoff which led to a Bengals’ touchdown. He had played eight regular season games for Green Bay in 2012 and this season.
Ross was originally signed by the New England Patriots in 2011 when he was undrafted coming out of California. He never played a regular season game for the Pats.