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Halftime blog: What the Lions need to do to finish with a win over Packers

Posted by ttwentyman on November 18, 2012 – 3:47 pm

An interception and a fumble by Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford late in the second quarter could have been costly for the Lions, but the Packers threw an interception of their own and missed a 50-yard field goal to help the Lions to only their second halftime lead of the season, 10-7.

Here are a couple halftime adjustments the Lions need to make to finish with a win:

1. Finish the rush

The Lions front four has gotten terrific pressure on Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers, forcing him into a Houdini act a few times.

The Lions have had their hands on Rodgers on more than one occasion in the first half and he’s still been able to complete passes.

One play in particular, a third-down-and-9 at the Green Bay 39, Lions defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh initially got pushed back but continued the rush and applied pressure up the middle. He forced Rodgers to move to his right and had a hand on him just before he flipped a pass out to receiver Donald Driver for a 12-yard gain.

The Packers scored five plays later.

Defensive tackle Nick Fairley finished his rush just before the half by sacking Rodgers and forcing a long field goal that the Packers missed. The Lions need more of that in the second half.

2. Continue to feed Calvin Johnson

Johnson has three catches for 88 yards as the Lions have gotten him involved early in the game. Johnson’s two biggest catches (53 and 21) set up both Lions scores. Feed the beast.

3. Protect Stafford

The Packers don’t have linebacker Clay Matthews and his nine sacks but that hasn’t prevented them from getting to Stafford.

The Packers have three sacks in the first half and a number of other pressures. Left tackle Jeff Backus has left the game with a hamstring injury, so the Riley Reiff era has began in Detroit. Lions need to be better protecting Stafford in second half.


Posted in Lions Insider Tim Twentyman | 13 Comments »