Stafford leads comeback win for Lions vs. Dolphins

Another week and another come-from-behind win for the Detroit Lions, who earned a final-minute touchdown sling from Matthew Stafford to Theo Riddick and beat the Miami Dolphins 20-16 in a low-scoring but highly entertaining contest between two of the NFL's best defenses. Our takeaways:

  1. Calvin Johnson's return opened up the Lions' offense. Both Megatron and Golden Tate went over the 100-yard mark for the game (Johnson 113 yards, seven catches, TD; Tate 109 yards, 11 catches). For most of the game, Stafford again struggled with his accuracy (his interception would have been an easy touchdown if he put it out in front of Megatron). Leaning on the NFL's No. 1 defense, the Lions haven't been a high-scoring squad. However, we have to give Stafford credit for dropping dimes late in games to get Detroit to 7-2 and keep them in first place in the NFC North.
  1. The slugfest between two of the NFL's top defenses was exactly as billed. Each team compiled three sacks, and each quarterback threw a pick. Brent Grimes' interception is one of the best plays you will see -- ever. Grimes stuck on Johnson as well as any cornerback in recent memory. The Lions' defensive front was the difference, completely shutting down the Dolphins' running game (50 yards) and knocking around Ryan Tannehill (nine QB hits).
  1. Tannehill made some good plays and continually bounced back from the beating. He made one terrible throw on his pick and threw behind a couple receivers in the red zone. The quarterback still can't hit the long ball but was able to dice up Lions linebackers in coverage with quick reads. His stat line was bland, but with zero running game, it wasn't a step backward for Tannehill.
  1. Despite a low score, this was a very entertaining game. There were three fake punts in the first half: Detroit set up a field goal with one converted fake. The Dolphins then converted on a fake punt but were called for a penalty that brought it back. Detroit then failed on the next possession on punter Sam Martin's pass. A Lions' field goal was blocked (shocking!) and returned by Dion Jordan to the 3-yard line setting up a score. Megatron scored on an early bomb. Cameron Wake was chasing people down from behind. Jordan was breaking up passes to Megatron in the end zone. Grimes made several highlight plays. Football is fun!!
  1. Ndamukong Suh was wrecking people. On the first two plays of the game, he had a tackle for loss and a sack wherein he tossed Mike Pouncey aside like he was a rag doll. This man is going to get paid soooooo much money this offseason.
  1. Jarvis Landry had another great game for the Dolphins. The rookie is Tannehill's most consistent playmaker, and the quarterback is beginning to trust him more.
  1. Branden Albert was carted off the field in the first half with a knee injury and he's believed to be out for the rest of the season, per NFL Media Insider Ian Rapopor. It's a big blow for the Dolphins' offensive continuity. He was playing as well as anyone in Miami.
  1. I have zero explanation about Joe Philbin's timeout usage on the Lions' game-winning drive. 

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