Found September 23, 2012 on
There was no lack of drama in this game. The Titans’ 44-41 overtime victory over the Detroit Lions will certainly be remembered for late-game heroics and a plethora of late momentum changes. I had already written the headline and first paragraph of this article when Detroit found themselves down 41-27 with barely over a minute on the clock. With Matthew Stafford on the sideline with a strained leg muscle, the game was over.  Simple as that. Then, the unthinkable happened.  Backup quarterback Shaun Hill entered the game, and led the Lions down the field, hooking up with Calvin Johnson for a three-yard score with 18 seconds left. All the Lions needed to do was recover an onside kick and catch a Hail Mary and the game would go to overtime. And they did. Incredibly, Jason Hanson delivered a perfect onside kick and Hill did his best Doug Flutie, hitting Titus Young for the game-tying touchdown as time expired. Unfortunately for Hill, it may be his failed quarterback sneak that Lions fans remember most. After Tennessee won the toss and eventually kicked a field goal (under the new overtime rules, a team that holds their opponent to a FG on their first possession gets a chance to score), Detroit took the ball down inside Tennessee’s 10-yard-line.  Then, on fourth-and-inches, Hill was stuffed on a QB sneak that never had a chance.  It appeared that center Dominic Raiola snapped the ball before Hill and the rest of the line was ready for it. Come to find out, the ball was never supposed to be snapped at all. After the game, Head Coach Jim Schwartz told the media that the sneak play was never supposed to be run, the plan was to line up and try to draw the Titans offside. Despite making a miraculous comeback bid, Detroit did all the wrong things in this game.  They were penalized a ton, allowed a plaethora of big plays, and couldn’t cover Stafford left the game with a strained leg muscle anyone. I wrote in my preview for this game that the Lions could lose only if they gave up big plays.  Easy enough, considering this Tennessee Titans team had only made one play of over 50 yards so far this season.  That was until they gashed the Lions for five plays of 50+ yards in this game. Detroit’s special teams unit gave up scores of 105 and 65 yards, with the longer one being a kickoff return and the shorter being a beautifully designed punt return throwback that had Wycheck to Dyson written all over it. The defense did their part as well, getting burned on touchdown passes of 61 and 71 yards and allowed 437 yards to a team that had averaged less than 250 yards per game. Even the offense got in on the action, as Brandon Pettigrew coughed up the ball to Alterraun Verner, who then took it 72 yards to the house. Detroit not only gave up way too many big plays, but also got killed by penalties.  Detroit took 10 penalties for 91 yards, including a number of boneheaded encroachment penalties that turned third-and-long into very manageable situations.  Twice this happened, and the Titans were able to convert. With so much to talk about in this game, I’ll try to hit everything quickly: Mikel Leshoure looked great, rushing for 100 yards and a touchdown to go with 34 yards receiving. Shaun Hill is the best backup quarterback in the league. The replacement refs continued their debacle, their biggest blunder coming in overtime.  On a Tennessee pass play, Steven Tulloch was (correctly) flagged for hitting the receiver helmet-to-helmet.  The catch was reviewed, and incorrectly overturned.  Then, the referees awarded Tennessee 27 yards instead of just the 15 it should have been.  Tennessee went on to kick the game-winning field goal. Why did Martin Mayhew draft Ryan Broyles?  More to come on this topic. This game could have been about what the Lions got done, but instead it became about what they didn’t. They couldn’t slow the Tennessee offense, they couldn’t prevent big plays, and in the end, they couldn’t even get the play call right.  Raiola snapping the ball when it shouldn’t have been snapped is an inexcusable mental lapse, and typifies this game for Detroit. Detroit now has a very long road ahead of them, starting next week at home against Minnesota. Follow me on twitter @ScottPeceny

Matt Stafford Exits Game With Leg Injury

Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford left Sunday's game against the Titans in the fourth quarter with a strained leg muscle.Fantasy Spin:Stafford didn't have a bad day but it's certainly not what we were expecting against a terrible Tennessee defense. The Lions QB threw for 278 yards and one touchdown before leaving the game.

Matthew Stafford Slated For MRI Monday

Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford (leg) will have an MRI on his right leg on Monday to evaluate his pulled leg muscle. According to the Detroit Free Press, Stafford injured his hamstring or glut during practice last week and then aggravated it Sunday trying to chase down Alterraun Verner following a fumble recovery.Fantasy Spin:Stafford was average against a pitiful Titans defense...

Matthew Stafford’s status for Vikings game up in the air after leg injury

During yesterday’s 44-41 Lions OT loss at the hands of the hapless Tennessee Titans, Matthew Stafford was taken out of the game during the fourth quarter with what was later revealed to be a leg muscle strain. Although not considered serious, Stafford was set to undergo an MRI Monday and with the results not officially known, CBS Sports’ Jason La Canfora tweeted some potentially...

Lions mum on QB Stafford's leg

Detroit Lions coach Jim Schwartz isn't saying much about quarterback Matthew Stafford's injured right leg. Stafford left late in the fourth quarter of Sunday's 44-41 overtime loss at Tennessee with a strained muscle, and although Shaun Hill played well in a relief role, the last thing the Lions want is a return to the days when their franchise quarterback wasn't...

Matthew Stafford's Status Unknown

Detroit Lions' quarterback Matthew Stafford is not revealing the extent of his that he suffered on Sunday, according to Stafford left Sunday's game against Tennessee with a leg injury in the fourth quarter. Detroit welcomes Minnesota to Ford Field in week 4. The 2009 first overall pick has been injury prone in his NFL career. He sustained a knee knock in...

Lions keeping QB situation under wraps

The Detroit Lions lost starting QB Matthew Stafford to injury Sunday, but they are trying to keep his status hush-hush for this week’s game against the Vikings.

Lions To Make Decision On Matthew Stafford Friday

Lions coach Jim Schwartz said he had no update on quarterback Matthew Stafford (leg) or the MRI Stafford received Monday. Schwartz said he would make a decision by Friday.Fantasy Spin:If you want to be safe and don't have a quality backup on your roster, use a waiver claim on backup Shaun Hill, who played well in the substitute role.

Miscommunication leads to Lions loss in overtime

You want crazy? The Detroit Lions and Tennessee Titans take the cake this week. According to Detroit Lions head coach Jim Schwartz , the last play which left the Lions unable to get one yard on fourth down was a miscommunication between the center and the quarterback. They were supposed to try and draw them offside and then kick a field goal to tie the game. Instead, the Lions...

NFL News: Week 3 Injury Report

If Revis is lost for the season, it may kill the Jets playoff hopes Matthew Stafford QB, Detroit Lions: As if a 1-2 start wasn’t bad enough for the Detroit Lions, their biggest concern now might be the health of Matthew Stafford. Stafford left the game with just over a minute left in the 4th quarter, after getting hit on a throw to Brandon Pettigrew. What made the injury more interesting...

Commercial Almost Cuts Off Lions' Dramatic Hail Mary

In one of the wildest NFL games that I could remember, the Lions were down seven with seven seconds to go against the Tennessee Titans. Shaun Hill, in relief of Matthew Stafford, threw up a hail mary when this happened. Viewers got to see the dramatic touchdown by a split second. TV stations really need to stop cutting away from games early for a commercial. Luckily, viewers...

Detroit Lions vs. Tennessee Titans: Hero and Zero of the Game

This game can only be described as crazy.Tennessee gave away an 11 point half-time lead, scored five touchdowns of 60 plus yards, scored 21 points straight to go back up, and gave up a 14 point lead in the final 18 seconds of the game.Detroit was able to survive long scoring droughts, Matthew Stafford getting injured in the final two minutes of the game, and having the Titans score...

Calvin Johnson Finally Reaches Pay Dirt in Week 3

Lions receiver Calvin Johnson finally got in the end zone in Week 3, but the throw didn't come from Matthew Stafford, it came from Shaun Hill. Hill replaced Stafford after the latter exited with a leg injury.Fantasy Spin:Johnson was a beast as expected, catching 10 balls for 164 yards and a touchdown. Megatron hasn't been hurt by Stafford's fantasy struggles at all this...
Lions News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.