Lions vs. Buccaneers - Week 5

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With game time temperatures soaring in to the low 90’s, the NFC North leading Lions came into this game needing a victory badly after the butt kicking they got in Chicago. The Bucs came into this game lead by Cadillac Williams, the rookie from Auburn and the much-maligned former UM QB Brian Griese.

The Lions got the ball to start the game after winning the toss and Eddie Drummond took the ball from his 7 and was crushed, so the Lions began the drive at their own 15. Joey brought out his Lions under center with a power I form and Jones picked up 3. Kevin got banged pretty hard and left for 2nd down. Joey called an audible on 2nd down and gave it to Pinner up the gut for a nice gain and a 1st down. On 1st down again, Joey hit Pinner for a 2-yard gain. With Jones back in the game, on second down former Viking Chris Hovan for a 2-yard gain hammered him. On 3rd down with 3 receivers, Joey made a great pass way down field to Roy Williams and he simply dropped the perfect pass. On the punt, Nick Harris made a great punt, but the Lions got a halo violation and the Bucs started from their own 46.

On the field came the former UM national championship winning QB Brian Griese and he went immediately to the air to Joey Galloway for a pick up of 5 yards. On 2nd down, they once again attacked the Lions and he picked up a huge gain to the Lions 18. On 1st down, Beck dropped a great Griese pass. On 2nd down, Cadillac ran up the field for 12. 1st and goal on the Lions 6, Cadillac gained 1. On 2nd down, the Bucs attacked the Lions secondary again out of a power I 2 TE formation and Griese rolled right but threw a bad pass to Clayton. On  3rd down Goodman was called for pass interference on Hilliard and the Bucs had a 1st down. The Bucs got flagged for a false start and it was 1st and goal on the 6. They went up the middle with Cadillac and Holmes stopped him for no gain. On 2nd down Griese went back to the air and Edwards sacked Griese. On 3rd down, Devries sacked Griese again to the 26. The Bucs hit the FG and with 7:56 left in the 1st quarter it was the Bucs 3 and the Lions 0. It was however a great stop for the D.

Devries took the kickoff out to his 38 and it was there that the Lions began drive number 2. Joey looked over the defense and he completed a pass to Pollard for a loss of 2. On 2nd down, Joey made a bad pass to Kevin Johnson so it was third and 12 for our Lions. On 3rd down, Joey ran to his 41 after no receiver could get open, so with a 4th and 7 the Lions had to punt yet again. Harris’s punt was awesome and after a nice return by Jones, the Bucs would begin drive number 3 at their own 15.

Cadillac gained 2 on 1st down, followed by a 6-yard gain on a pass on 2nd. On 3rd down, Griese hit the big Mike Clayton out to the 30 and a 1st down. On 1st down again, Big Baby Shaun Rogers nailed Mike Pittman for no gain. On 2nd down, the Lions hurried Griese on a great blitz for an incomplete and Pittman also got a 15-yard facemask on James Davis. Pittman picked up 11 yards up the middle on 2nd down. On 3rd down Pitman could not get past Kalimba Edwards for the 1st so the Bucs had to punt. Drummond took the great punt and he reversed to R. W. McQuarters up to the Lions 21.

Harrington came back onto the field and the Lions had a horrible 3 and out series and punted away. The Bucs got the ball at their own 30. The first two plays, both to Cadillac, accomplished little and facing a critical 3rd and 5, Griese fumbled and DeVries picked up a fumble that Edwards caused.

The Lions began their 1st drive of the 2nd quarter from the Bucs 33. Joey handed to Kevin Jones for a nice 3-yard gain on 1st down. On 2nd down, Harrington had a 5 receiver set and hit Mike Williams for a 3-yard gain. On 3rd and 4, Joey ran for a 2-yard gain and the Lions settled for a pathetic FG that was good by Hanson and with 11:31 left in the 2nd quarter, it was Lions 3 and the Bucs 3.

After and un-eventful Bucs drive the Lions took back possession from their own 27. Harrington gave it to Jones who picked up no gain. On 2nd down, Joey gave the ball to Jones for a 5-yard gain. On 3rd down, Joey hit Bryson out of the backfield for a 4-yard gain, but not a first. Joey has got to relax and look down field. The Lions punted AGAIN! I said in my random thoughts that they Lions had to use the pass to open the run, they aren’t and it shows. Why invest such a % of your salary cap in the WR section (3 #1 Draft Picks) and not use it? The Bucs drive lasted a short time however as Griese was picked off by Teddy Lehman and the Lions got the ball with a 1st and goal. Kevin Jones picked up 4 on 1st down. On 2nd, Kevin went on for the TD. The PAT was good by Hanson and the Lions had the lead 10-3 with 4:58 left in the 2nd quarter.

The Bucs needed a drive critically but started from their own 10 after another dumb penalty. Griese threw a bullet pass that was dropped on 1st down. On 2nd down, Griese another pass dropped, this one by Galloway and the Lions gave up a huge 16-yard gain on 3rd down. With another 1st down to work on, Cadillac took a swing pass from Griese for a 3-yard gain. On 2nd down, Griese threw an interception, but the Lions got a penalty (it was an atrocious call) so the Bucs kept the ball. On 1st Cadillac picked up 3 and Griese had a bad pas under pressure from Edwards on 2nd. On the critical 3rd down, the Bucs had a 20-yard gain to the Lions 48. On 1st down, Griese threw a horrific pass behind Cadillac. On 2nd, he hit his TE Smith for a 7-yard gain. On 3rd down, Griese hit Mike Pittman for a 41-yard TD strike and the PAT was good and with 1:12 left in the 2nd quarter the game was tied at 10.

The Lions got the ball at their own 20. The overly conservative Mariucci had Harrington go long to Roy Williams and the Lions picked up 32 yards to the Bucs 48. On 2nd down, Joey had a nice read and hit Pollard who fumbled when he was hit. The turnover gave the Bucs back the ball at their 38.

Griese hit Pittman for 12 yards to the Lions 48.  On 1st down again, Griese threw a terrible pass to Galloway that no one could have caught. On 2nd down he once again threw a bad pas to Galloway and once again no one could catch it. On 3rd down Griese hit a wide-open R.W. McQuarters for the interception and the half ended.

The Bucs came out in the second half, with a quick 80-yard strike to Galloway for the TD. The PAT was good and the Bucs led 17-10. At this point Cadillac Williams was no longer used as he had sustained a hamstring injury.

After a myriad of wasted series by both teams, the Lions finally scored a FG early in the 4th quarter after a Holt interception. That made the score 17-13 Bucs.

Again, both team practiced futility and surprisingly, the Lions continued to go with using Jones sparingly. We were told that Kevin Jones was not hurt and if that is the case, then the Lions offense of scheme completely sucks. If your not going to use one of the best young backs in the game, then why go to his backup?

The Lions final drive found them realizing that they actually had a talented receiving corps to use. They tried to get down the field for a winning TD. What looked to be the game-winning pass to Pollard was reviewed and reversed and finally Joey hit Mike Williams for a completion but he was out of bounds. Lastly, Joey had a bad pass to Roy and the game was over. 17-13 Bucs.

The Lions drop to 1-2 and this game was clearly lost by a pathetic job of coaching. To not open up the playbook and use the talented WR’s that they have is inexcusable. The defense played good enough to win, and the final drive showed us that they could have moved the ball with that scheme.

Grades:

Offense: D 13 points is not a job worthy of a passing grade. However it is not their fault, the coaches call the plays and the scheme.

Defense:Â B got turnovers and kept the Bucs under 20.

Special Teams: C got 2 FG’s but also kicked one out of bounds on a kickoff.

Coaching: F this does not reflect the defensive coaches. It is finally time for Mooch to coach like he is paid. Pathetic!