Found October 11, 2013 on
As a guy who once covered the Detroit Lions religiously, I couldn’t help but jump on it when Joe White (Co-Founder and CEO of, and also my boss) asked me to write about the Detroit Lions’ game this weekend. I’ve covered the Lions through highs and lows: the 10-6 2011 campaign that saw them make the playoffs, and last year’s team that blundered its way to a 4-12 record. At 3-2, are the Lions more 2011 or 2012? As I searched for the answer to this question, I couldn’t help but look back on some old Lions stuff I wrote, namely my 2012 season review. The season was a wreck for Detroit, and for many reasons. Dropped passes, sketchy play from Matt Stafford, tons of turnovers, and a few bad breaks culminated in 12 losses for the boys in Honolulu Blue. Will the Lions fall into their old ways and finish the season with a losing record? Or will they regain their 2011 swagger and make a playoff push? This week’s game against the Cleveland Browns will tell Lions fans a lot about their current team. The game takes place at 1:00p.m. in Cleveland at FirstEnergy stadium and will be televised locally on Fox. The Browns are anything but flashy, but their 3-2 record speaks to the ability of this team. They don’t have a franchise quarterback, they traded away their franchise running back, and their top playmakers are guys like Joe Haden and Paul Kruger- blue collar, lunch pail and hardhat guys who bring it every week. These Browns can play, and while you might not believe me, you’ll see it on the field this Sunday. The NFL’s version of moneyball is coming to fruition in Cleveland and somewhere, Billy Beane is smiling. Ok, maybe old Billy isn’t smiling because my Tigers just knocked his A’s out of the playoffs in his own house, but you get the point. What’s interesting about this matchup is that when the Lions have the ball, you’ll see two of the NFL’s elite units on the field in the Lions’ offense and the Browns’ defense. But when Cleveland has the ball, you’ll be seeing two of the NFL’s worst units in the Browns’ offense and the Lions’ defense. But, each of these units has their strengths and weaknesses. Take the Lions’ offense for instance. Pressure Matt Stafford and it’s over. Simple as that. If the Browns can knock Stafford around and get him throwing over the middle off his back foot as he loves to do, the Lions will really struggle to move the ball, and they’ll definitely turn it over. But, if the Lions can establish a running game and give Stafford time to go through his progression, the Lions will be able to beat this Browns defense. When the Lions are clicking and Calvin Johnson is on the field, they’re nearly impossible to stop. When Calvin is out and Stafford is hurried, well, we saw what happens in that scenario last week in Green Bay. Calvin Johnson will have to show up if the Lions want to get a win (Photo: Leon Halip/Getty Images) And speaking of Megatron, this is a game that he must take personally. Going against a premier corner in Haden, he’ll have to step up and make it a point to have a big day. Should he be quieted, I’m not sure Detroit has the firepower to score many points. Like the Lions, the Browns have weaknesses on offense as well. Like I mentioned earlier, Brandon Weeden is hardly Tom Brady, and the combo of Chris Ogbonnaya and Willis McGahee won’t win you any rushing titles. But this team isn’t on a three game winning streak for nothing- they can score when they need to in all three phases of the game. In fact, the Browns have outscored the Lions 85-76 over the last three weeks. Granted, many of those points were scored with Brian Hoyer at the helm, but Weeden looked effective last Thursday night against the Bills. Follow isportsweb on twitter Cleveland will try to establish the run in this game in an effort to free up emerging star tight end Jordan Cameron off of play-action. If the Lions allow McGahee to start hot and get some chunks of yardage early, the Lions could be in for a long day. They don’t have anyone near talented enough to cover Cameron one on one, so he’ll be enough of a problem without the threat of a run game. The Lions need to jump out early in this one, take away the running game and limit Cameron as much as possible. This is all but an easy task: basically I’m asking Detroit to shut down the run, score a couple touchdowns early so the Browns have to throw, and then when they do throw, my theory asks the Lions to stop one of the league’s most talented young players. If they can do that and come out of this road game with a win, then I may start believing in this team. No big deal right?   Follow me on twitter @ScottPeceny Read more Lions rumors, news and opinion on our Detroit Lions page

Why the Lions will beat the Browns

Lions vs. Browns (Detroit Lions Facebook page) The phone lines of Detroit sports talk radio were brewing with angry Lions fans on the night of August 15th when the Detroit Lions lost to the Cleveland Browns at Cleveland with it being the third preseason game. “Why was our offense so out of sync?!,” said on caller. Another shouted, “That offense is nothing without Calvin...

Calvin Johnson was limited in Thursday’s practice

Lions wide receiver Calvin Johnson returned to practice on Thursday with a brace on his injured knee, according to the Detroit Free Press. Johnson took part in position drills but did not run routes downfield nor line up with the skeleton offense. It still sounds like Johnson will be a game time decision this week. “He’s doing a little bit better every day,” Schwartz said....

Suh's big fine sticks

Detroit Lions defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh lost an appeal of the 100,000 fine against him, taking a financial hit for a block below the belt. Suh's agent, Roosevelt Barnes, told The Associated Press he was notified Friday of the appeal officer's decision. The six-figure fine was the largest in NFL history for on-field conduct, not including money lost by players due to...

Nate Burleson targeting Week 10 return to Lions

getty images Detroit Lions wide receiver Nate Burleson is targeting Week 10 for his return to the field. That comes a week after the Lions bye week. That would put Burleson on the field for their Nov. 10 game against a divisional rival in the Chicago Bears. On Wednesday Burleson was spotted going though drills without a cast on his arm. “It was a little unexpected; I am not due...

Lions at Browns: Five things to watch

It's a rematch of that August 15 preseason thriller. This one means just a little bit more. The Detroit Lions and Cleveland Browns - a couple of 3-2 teams trying to prove they're playoff contenders regardless of what anybody else thinks of them - meet Sunday at FirstEnergy Stadium in Cleveland. (The Browns, by the way, won the exhibition game, 24-6, on the same field)...

Suh's $100,000 fine from NFL upheld

Detroit Lions defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh lost an appeal of the $100,000 fine against him, taking a financial hit for a block below the belt. Suh's agent, Roosevelt Barnes, told The Associated Press he was notified Friday of the appeal officer's decision. The six-figure fine was the largest in NFL history for on-field conduct, not including money lost by players due...

Calvin Johnson a game-time decision against Browns

Detroit Lions running back Calvin Johnson (knee) is "questionable" for Sunday's game against the Cleveland Browns, and will be a game-time decision, reports Chris Wesseling of With Johnson out last week against the Green Bay Packers, the Lions put up only nine total points in the loss. Tim Twentyman of the team's official website likes Johnson'...

NFL News: Calvin Johnson’s status is up in the air for Lions vs. Browns

Calvin Johnson will be a game-time decision this weekend when the Lions get set to face the Browns in Cleveland. The big, talented receiver missed a 22-9 loss to the Packers the prior week, but practiced on a limited basis on Thursday. His replacement, Kris Durham, caught three passes for 30 yards and a touchdown. It was the only passing touchdown of the day for the Lions’ quarterback...

Ndamukong Suh's historic fine is upheld after appeal

The historic fine levied against Ndamukong Suh for a low block on Vikings center John Sullivan has been upheld according to the Associated Press. The fine of $100,000 was, at the time, the largest fine ever handed down for on-field play. Since then, that fine has been equaled by the $100,000 fine of Dashon Goldson. It's no surprise that the fine was upheld. In fact, the surprise...

Lions win with big second half

CLEVELAND (AP) -- Matthew Stafford threw three of his four touchdown passes in the second half, rallying the Detroit Lions to a 31-17 win over the Cleveland Browns on Sunday. The Lions (4-2) outscored the Browns 24-0 in the second half, sealing their win when Stafford hooked up with tight end Joseph Fauria with 2:01 left. Fauria caught three TD passes for the Lions, who played...

Lions' Johnson returns to practice

Calvin Johnson was back on the practice field for the Detroit Lions on Thursday, although it's still not clear how likely he is to play this weekend at Cleveland.

Haden Welcomes Challenge

If Detroit Lions' WR Calvin Johnson plays Sunday, Browns defensive back Joe Haden is prepared for the challenge.

Joseph Fauria Pulls Off Another Solid Touchdown Dance

Matthew Stafford hit the Lions’ tight end Joseph Fauria with a 1-yard TD pass in the first quarter and Fauria followed it up with yet another solid TD celebration. Not sure what it is but it possibly could be another ‘NSYNC TD dance? [via Guyism] Article found on: Next Impulse Sports
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